“Daily routine? Photographers don’t have daily routines,” exclaims Christopher Anderson, when asked about his new life in Barcelona. With a base in New York City and a family home in Spain, the photographer travels extensively for his work.
He has just finished a project in Shenzhen, China: the Magnum Live Lab, where he worked with fellow Magnum member Alex Majoli to create a new body of work inspired by the location, which was shot, printed and exhibited in just two weeks. This chimes in with Anderson’s view of travel: “I think the physical act of travel is irrelevant. Indeed, I travel a lot, but it is the journey that is important, not the travel.”
The Live Lab reveals the processes at the heart of each photographer’s practice, and for Anderson, what echoes through his work is the search for intimacy. Photographing his family life is an enduring element of his oeuvre, famously since the birth of his first child, as recorded in the photobook Son, a pivotal moment in his career.
Sharing previously unseen work shot during the summer, Anderson explains: “The act of photography is part of my interface with the world. It is part of how I explain the world to myself. My photography is fundamentally about my experience. So it is important to me in the same way that sleeping is important to dreaming.”
The inextricability between the sense of self and the act of photography is defined by Anderson’s vision – when asked what the perfect assignment looks like, or indeed what it means to him to be part of the Magnum collective, he simply responds: “Freedom.” And why photography? “I think I agree with Garry Winogrand who said that he photographs to see what things look like when they are photographed,” he answers.
Anderson is the latest Magnum photographer to collaborate with British brand Belstaff, this time in the creation of a new, limited edition field jacket, “tailoring a jacket which is both functional for field work, yet looks good year-round in an urban environment like Barcelona,” where he lives. At the intersection of form and function, the resilient garment is outerwear that is portable and hardwearing, perfect for travel.
More about the collaboration, here.