Photographer Max Steven Grossman: A Closer Look at ‘Bookscapes’

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Photographer Max Steven Grossman: A Closer Look at ‘Bookscapes’

Max Steven Grossman fell in love with photography shortly after finishing a rigorous engineering program at the University of Philadelphia.

From there, the Colombian photographer honed his craft and pursued his passion in New York City, attaining an M.A. from New York University and the International Center of Photography.

Immersed in the world of commercial photography, Grossman began cultivating a creative vision that would grow to become a breakthrough series. In 2006, he started making Bookscapes – composite images from various bookshelves combined to form libraries that don’t otherwise exist.

Bookscapes may seem static at first glance, but behind each composition is an intricate process of digital manipulation and – true to Grossman’s background – engineering. We’re talking hours upon hours of focus, a perfect balance of concentration and creativity.

Grossman is essentially building bookcases and filling them with books, digitally. That’s where the brilliance lies, in the character and dimension each finished piece takes on.

“I think people enjoy these images because they’re relatable,” Grossman says. “They’re welcoming, and the relationship each viewer experiences is almost immediately personal.”

Bookscapes are organized by topic – Hollywood, Rock and Roll, Fashion, Architecture, Art, etc. They’re life-sized, some of them exceeding 8 feet tall, and they’re printed and mounted by Duggal under the direction of art consultant Hope Savvides.

“Hope is so great,” says Grossman. “She takes care of everything with top quality and service. I love her.”

Is building and filling a bookcase from scratch as opposed to simply photographing a library somewhat taxing? Undoubtedly, yes. But the reward is in the art; for Grossman, each piece is a trophy. And in the same way you tend to your bookcase at home, every once in awhile he dusts off an old bookscape and moves a few things around.

Enjoy a few Bookscapes below, and click here to view more of Grossman’s work.

Portrait courtesy of Axxis

Images courtesy of Axiom Contemporary