All Quiet on the Home Front
All Quiet on the Home Front published in November 2017. Order your copy or our special box with a print. Please find all the details below:
All Quiet on the Home Front, the long awaited first book by the photographer and writer Colin Pantall published in collaboration with ICVL Studio. The book includes 48 colour photographs taken between 2005-2017 and his writings narrate the story behind the work:
When Isabel was a baby I had a dream. In the dream it was Christmas. We lived above a pub in a single room crammed with old pub furniture. In one corner was a Christmas tree. It had real candles, all of which were balanced precariously on the tree’s branches. It also had electric lights which were plugged into the socket using bare, sparking wires. And instead of sitting in a bowl of water, it sat in a bowl of acid.
That sense of claustrophobia, morbidity, and anxiety is apparent in All Quiet on the Home Front. It is a reflection of the fears that sat deep within me all when I became a parent; the fear of my daughter’s death, my own death, and my built in obsolescence and redundancy as a parent. To escape this claustrophobia, the banging off the walls and the endless ‘playing’, I took Isabel outside into the landscapes around our home in Bath. The woods of Brown’s Folly, growing out of the contours of an old stone mine, the scrappy bmx track built on the banks of the River Avon, and the Celtic hilltop of Solsbury Hill became our playground. These are the landscapes where both Isabel and I found ourselves and this book tells that story.
It’s the story of becoming a child and becoming a father. It’s a self-portrait.
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“All Quiet on the Home Front takes the little explored subject of a father and daughter relationship. It covers the ground of parental ambivalence – a term which legitimises feelings such as fear, boredom, anger, confusion and other conflicting emotions in relation to having a child. Colin photographs his daughter Isabel as she grows up and away from him. She is shown as wild and free – at ease in the landscape in the photographs. The father, however, often stumbles in words. Isabel soars, skillfully captured in imaginary worlds. The stronger she seems the more fragile the link between them becomes as it constantly changes and evolves. This is a confronting and honest book, and I feel that Isabel is so lucky to have a father who is so closely connected, who loves her so dearly and has the courage to question the acute fears and doubts that come with the parenting relationship.”
Susan Bright (Independent curator and writer)
‘’I was struck by the captivating intimacy right away. Witnessing a growing up girl in her real world that could also be her fantasy world. And she lets the photographer, her father, be part of this. With capturing these passing years of his daughter he captures himself as well. Rarely a male photographer shares this openly his personal thoughts and fears in a photo book’’
Awoiska van der Molen (Photographer)
‘Why, in exploring these pages, the photos and the small texts that accompany them, do we feel such an intense feeling of both familiarity and strangeness? The intimacy that this progression of images, thoughts and, ultimately, life arouses is very strong and matched only by the blinding compactness that can in no way be overcome or broken down. It is not our world, these are not our affections, yet all this concerns and touches us so intimately. Everything speaks of us and to us, speaks to each one of us and says something very personal and extraordinarily intimate to all. Everything in this book makes us feel part of the family and, a mere instant after, cut off from the outset and forever from a world that does not belong to us. Then, weakly at first and ultimately very strongly a feeling arises that is not unwelcome, but which thanks to this sense of alienation, tells us that this story of life touches the experience of each of us with great strength and delicacy. Touching, provoking, indulging our sensitive points, both happy and sorrowful ones, both joyful and sad ones. Summoning those tears and those smiles that are ours alone and no one else’s, but which without these photos we would find it harder to rediscover, hear, feel.’
Alessia Gaviano (Senior Photo Editor at VOGUE Italy)
‘There is a period in parenthood when it feels like it’s going to last forever, and sometimes not always in a good way. And there is another period when you wake up and realize that it’s actually going to be over: this role and identity you’ve had for so long is soon coming to an end. “All Quiet On The Home Front” captures that beauty and anxiety that is the push and pull of parenthood. Grab something and cherish it, but be aware it’s also slipping through your fingers as fast as sand. “All Quiet On The Home Front” has a haunting resonance that asks me more questions every time I engage with it’
Martin Amis (PhotobookStore)