WALES AT WATERS EDGE
Large Format with 124 images and Afterword by Jeremy Moore. Text by Jon Gower. (160 pp) Gomer Press, May 2012; hb, £19.99. ISBN 978-1-84851-242-9
Also available in a Welsh language edition with text by Dei Tomos. CYMRU AR HYD EI GLANNAU (160 pp) Gomer Press, July 2012; £19.99 ISBN 978-1-84851-243-6
Other photographers have tackled the Welsh coast in their books in recent years, but each has left me frustrated. One might imagine, for example, that the Welsh coastline consisted only of pristine beaches and sunsets or boats bobbing in tranquil harbours. Wales at Waters' Edge shows instead how the often magnificent Welsh coastline is at the same time a multi-faceted beast with all kinds of human impacts and connections.
" ............. a rich and individual response to the present realities of coastal Wales as well as a record of the history which has shaped it. The reader is made intensely aware of mutability, of the ebb and flow not only of the tidal margin itself but of human use and abandonment of the landscape.
The sequence begins in the river Severn where, under the ‘strung-steel ... Aeolian harp’ bridge, the last lave net fishermen fish for salmon – but the fish are few and the fisherman is a Llanwern steel worker. This sets the tone for what is much more than a beautiful picture book with poetic commentary (though it is that too).
In images such as the magnificent orange and black study of Milford Haven, the concrete sterility of Rhyl’s ‘Fun Centre’ or the curiously timeless palimpsest of ‘Stone graffiti on the Great Orme’, Jeremy Moore comments eloquently on human interaction with nature. More unusually he also does so through his portraits of people who live by the coast........... Jon Gower smoothly knits together a web of stories from mythical heroes, imperialist kings, smugglers, wreckers, miners and saints with up-to- the-minute reports on vast new sea defences at Borth and the revival of Mostyn docks by shipping Airbus wings to Bordeaux.
The broad sweep and idiosyncratic or telling details characterise the work of both photographer and writer. Sometimes Jeremy Moore can achieve both at once in his close, fractal studies of rock and sand (‘Mewslade Bay, Gower’ or ‘Near Rhoscolyn’) where one might be looking at a few square inches of shore or mountain valleys and desert details from the air – or the distant past.
This publication coincides with the opening of coastal paths which, like this book, follow the whole fascinating and varied profile of Wales. It is an excellent inspiration to its readers to go and explore for themselves."
Review by Caroline Clark from www.gwales.com, with the permission of the Welsh Books Council.
"....'Photograph' seems such a mechanical word for the fantastic images captured or created by Jeremy Moore; a diverse range of subjects, sometimes from an unusual angle. Lots of natural beauty as you'd expect and ugly things portrayed with panache."
Review by Huw Jenkins in Natur Cymru / Nature in Wales
PEMBROKESHIRE - JOURNEYS AND STORIES
121 photographs by Jeremy Moore plus text by Trevor Fishlock.
Gomer Press 2011 1160 pp)hb only £19.99 (ISBN 978-1-84851-086-9)
Amateur Photographer (30th July 2011) said -
"Pembrokeshire is a genuinely beautiful part of South Wales and this book demonstrates the photographic possibilities of the area. As well as the imagery, though, Trevor Fishlock's lyrical text draws out the poetic possibilities of the space. This book is a real pleasure."
56 photographs and written introduction by Jeremy Moore. Poetry by Gwyn Thomas
Gomer Press 2007. hb only £19.99 (ISBN 978 1 84323 690 0)
The extraordinary town of Blaenau Ffestiniog owes its existence to the slate mines which surround it. This tiny enclave of heavy industry is itself set within the rugged mountains of the Snowdonia National Park. The industry's importance has declined to a fraction of its former value, but its effect on the landscape remains a powerful one.
The images in this book show how human activities in Blaenau relate to the land itself, in a style which could be described as 'landscape / documentary'.
Accompanying the images are thirty poems by Blaenau-born Gwyn Thomas, formerly Professor of Welsh at Bangor University and Welsh National Poet.
Some reviews of BLAENAU FFESTINIOG -
"Concenrating on Blaenau Ffestiniog ..... has allowed Jeremy Moore to capture a 'terrible beauty' full of drama, ingenuity, toil and sacrifice. Some of his compositions have abstracted the landscape, while others emphasise a breathtaking scale. ..... A wonderfully refreshing and irresistible book" Walking Wales
" .... Jeremy's accomplished pictures ...." Amateur Photographer
HEART OF THE COUNTRY
62 photographs and introduction by Jeremy Moore. Text by William Condry
Gomer Press 2003. hb £19.95 (ISBN 1 84323 276 6), sb £14.95 (ISBN 1 84323 203 0)
Reprinted with a new cover in 2007
The late William Condry lived near Machynlleth in Powys and was a writer and a pioneer in the world of conservation. He wrote a number of books on natural history, including classic 'New Naturalist' Guides to Wales and the Snowdonia National Park. He also contributed a column to 'The Guardian' every fortnight for over 40 years. In each of these "Country Diaries" he tackled a topic or topics relating to the Welsh countryside in a unique and perceptive style. He died in 1998.
In this tribute Jeremy selected 62 of Bill's "Country Diaries", and paired each one with a photograph. The pairing is "text led" in some cases and "image led" in others.
Some reviews of HEART OF THE COUNTRY -
"Moore's sublime photographs take you into the landscape, and the moods they capture are a perfect accompaniment to Condry's words" Natur Cymru
"..... stunning imagery that gives new insights into the shapes, seasons and character of the Welsh landscape." The Big Issue
" This is a wonderful book. .... the photographs are simply stunning and add a real context and depth to Bill's words." Plantlife