DEAR DAVE,

Although a journal devoted to photography, we have proposed a tolerant and nimble definition of the medium. Thus in this issue, we include poetry, narrative text and a portfolio of watercolor.

Over the years Dike Blair has produced gouaches that carefully replicate his photographs—snapshots that frame subtle variations of color, transparency, and luminosity and offer a curious toggle between the genteel traditions of the medium and the immediacy and emphemerality of the snapshot, between the sublime and mundane.

A group of portraits from 1988 by Timothy Greenfield-Sanders (utilizing the then novel Polaroid 20x24 camera) pairs a group of individuals who were engaged with photography in relationship to the larger art world conversation, and who represented a small and fledgling community, particularly in comparison to the swollen ranks of the present.

Two portfolios are devoted to efforts of prominent members of the visual arts community in language. Often inspired by photographs, Alice Rose George observes the natural world with meticulous pleasure and longing, and a playful celebration of the senses.

Laurel Nakadate has contributed a text that, through the activities of a four-year-old girl, explores themes that have informed her photographic and video work. Trust, joy, desire, vulnerability and the tender camaraderie that can occur in unexpected ways.

Allyson Anne Lamb is among a generation whose work renders a confluence of psychedelia and overt Photoshop shenanigans. These self-portraits suggest a feverish and corporeal delirium, an ecstatic and mutating liberation that is both familiar and startling.

Through his seminal work from the seventies that gave individual voice to broader class division, Jim Goldberg has inspired several generations of photographers who have sought methodologies to open conventions of the photograph as a vehicle for social change. In Open See, the tumult and tragedy of refugees fleeing global oppression, economic devastation and violence are given individual impulse, their voices and hopes inscribed on the photograph; both urgent and resilient.

As another form of voice, Maggie Cepis has culled posted sentiments from an overseas admirer to form the basis of her ambiguous broadsides, and a puzzling mixture of anonymity and intimacy, public and private.

In “55 Angels and the Modest Sublime” our editor-at-large, Mark Alice Durant outlines the heavens as a site of inspiration and engagement among a group of contemporary photographers. Themes of mapping, interpretation, optics and marking that are indigenous to the photographic discourse are given context amidst our broader cultural aspirations, imagination and speculations.

Along with the pleasures of spring I am grateful for your companionship.

Thanks and love, 
Stephen