Underground filmmaker, music video director and photographer Kern (Action) has built the latter half of his career on documenting a kind of hipster porn aesthetic, and this latest book, his tenth, continues that trend, with glossy full-color images of women caught, seemingly unawares, in various stages of undress. At their best, the pictures here are simple and effective, as much about the play of light, atmosphere and composition as about any forced notions of sexuality. At their worst, they are simply cheesy. One, an obvious homage to the iconic 70s image of a female tennis payer scratching her butt, comes off as less sexy than clumsy and stale. As might be expected in a book that purports to be created on the fly, there’s an abundance of public nudity and crotch shots here-perhaps one of Kern’s particular fetishes-and most of the images are in soft focus, as if taken with telephoto lens from behind bushes and across fields. Kern prefers his models natural and disheveled; readers might welcome the lack of make-up and artifice in his photographs-assuming that the essential artifice of reconstructed voyeurism doesn’t turn them off, that is.
160 pages, hardcover