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The artist and photographer Nick Waplington was born 1970 in Aden and lives in New York City. The eldest of three children, he traveled extensively during his childhood as his father worked as a scientist in the nuclear industry. He studied art at Worthing Art College, Trent Polytechic and the Royal College of Art in London.
From 1984 Waplington would regularly visit his grandfather on the Broxtowe Estate in Nottingham where he began to photograph his immediate surroundings. Friends and neighbours of his family became his subject matter of choice. He continued with this work on and off for the next 15 years and from it came two books (Living Room and Weddings, Parties, Anything, both Aperture Foundation) and numerous exhibitions. (The book Weddings, Parties, Anything was called The Wedding for the American version only.)
Other Edens (Aperture 1994) focused on environmental concerns and, although it was conceived and worked on at the same time as 'Living Room', was seen as a major departure in style and content. This work is global in nature and its ideas are ambiguous and multi-layered.
Other bodies of work include the much-copied Safety in Numbers (Booth Clibborn Editions 1997), a bleak study of E culture in the mid-1990s, and The Indecisive Memento, a global road trip where the journey itself was the artwork (Booth Clibborn Editions 1999).
Waplington's next published work was Truth or Consequences (Phaidon 2001), a pictorial game based on the history of photography using the town of Truth or Consequences, New Mexico as a backdrop. In this work the rules of the 1950s television show inspired the concept of Waplington's photographic project.
"Learn how to die the easy way" (Trolley Books, 2002) Waplington's contribution to a group exhibition in part of the Venice Biennale 2001, expresses a yearning for the artistic and commercial freedom that the web might yet expose and a celebration of the dislocated reason behind conventional thoughts and media. "If, as I suspect," says Waplington, "the Internet has broken the stranglehold of governments and large media corporations on mass communication, then we could be in for a very exciting period of development on a number of different levels. Would a breakdown of current modes of social, moral and political cohesion be too much for a man to ask for?"
His other photographic books include You Love Life, (Trolley Books, 2005) in which the photographer uses pictures taken over a 20 year period to construct an autobiographical narrative.
Waplington's graphic novel "Terry Painter" was made in collaboration with Miguel Calderon in 2003. This and other projects with Calderon including "The Garden of Suburban Delights" have been exhibited in Europe and the US.
In December 2007, the project space at the Whitechapel Art Gallery in London showed his slide show of found internet photos, entitled "Synethesia". Also to be published are a series of ten books of found imagery called "You Are Only What You See,", with a separate catalog of original photos by Waplington called 'Double Dactyl' (Trolley Books, 2008).
Waplington worked on a major book project with the fashion designer Alexander McQueen during 2008/2009. The book was completed, edited and ready for publication by Waplington and McQueen at the time of McQueen's untimely death in 2010. The book titled 'Working Process' (ISBN 978-88-6208-295-2) will be published by Damiani, New York in October 2013.
2011 has seen two new books from Waplington, 'Surf Riot' published by Little Big Man of New York City and the self published printed on demand title 'Lackadaisical' a work that changes with every 100 copies printed.
- "Nothing Happens". Out (magazine). March 1999. p. 40. Retrieved 29 January 2011.
- Jon Prosser, ed. (2000). Image-based research a sourcebook for qualitative researchers (Repr. ed.). London: Falmer. p. 32. ISBN 978-0-7507-0649-0. Retrieved 29 January 2011.