^ Joshua Gordon, Untitled, 2019, Polaroid photo (signed on the reverse), 11.5 x 8.5 cm.

OTP Short-Forms: Joshua Gordon


An interview with the London-based filmmaker, musician and visual artist.

Honest records, disillusionment with photography and "Chill Out" by the KLF.

Moving from Dublin to London in 2013, Gordon quickly attracted attention with his provocative self-published photographic "Diary" series as well as with music videos for Vegyn and short films documenting fringe communities like biker gangs in Thailand and Juggalos.


Encouraged by his mother to keep a camera in his hand at all times, Joshua Gordon began taking pictures in his early teenage years either of his friends, or to show them at school. Today, the artist's work between film-making, photography and collage shows greater technical sophistication but relies upon the same basic principles of establishing an intimate relationship between artist, subject and viewer.

The following interview was produced to coincide with Selected Polaroids, a presentation of new photographic work by Joshua Gordon with OTP.

OTP Could I ask you to speak a little bit about where the images in this presentation come from?

JG These are a mix of polaroids from the last two years, two are from a series of self portraits I was shooting in London.


The rest are from my most recent project Butterfly, a story about two Cuban sisters who transitioned to female together in Havana. 

OTP What do you like about shooting Polaroids?

JG I’m fond of the immediate nature of polaroids, it’s a nice change to be able to hold a physical, tangible photograph in your hands, something that can not be digitally manipulated in any way.


It is a very frank, honest record of that particular moment in time. 


^ Joshua Gordon, Untitled, 2019, Polaroid photo (signed on the reverse), 11.5 x 8.5 cm.

OTP Do you have any kind of personal philosophy when it comes to making images?

JG I care about my connection with the subjects most importantly, each image should help to tell the overarching narrative of the project or add to it in some way.

The most important thing within my work is emotion, and conveying an accurate and genuine depiction of the subject and their back story / who they are.

OTP Can you work whilst you are having a strong emotional experience?

JG Yes, I have had strong emotional experiences with a lot of my subjects, especially the girls from Butterfly.

OTP Was there a definitive moment when you realised that this was what you wanted to do with your life?

JG I’m not even sure that I would say I always wanted to do this, at times I hate photography, and more recently especially I don’t feel too fond about making images or video.

I am interested in telling stories and happy to occasionally use photography as a medium to do so, but I’m not sure how passionate I am about the art and practice of “photography” per se.

I am more interested at the moment in exploring other mediums of expression like music and video art.


^ Joshua Gordon, Untitled, 2019, Polaroid photo (signed on the reverse), 11.5 x 8.5 cm.

OTP What sort of stories interest you?

JG Stories about love and sadness.

OTP What are some of your earliest memories of image-making?

JG My earliest memories of taking pictures were as an early teen, shooting a lot of skateboarding and graffiti and general cliche teenage rebellion.


OTP Did you like growing up in Dublin?

JG Yes and no, a great part of my identity comes from my time in Dublin, but growing up somewhere not so forward thinking and multicultural came with it’s own set of challenges and obstacles.


^ Joshua Gordon, Untitled, 2019, Polaroid photo (signed on the reverse), 11.5 x 8.5 cm.

OTP Are you religious?

JG Only when on mushrooms.

OTP What is something you are excited about at the moment?

JG Making music.


OTP Who are some of the people that you admire most?

JG There are so many people around the world making incredible work at the moment. 


I greatly admire the artists Sean Vegezzi, Nick Sethi, Eric Mack, Momo Okabe, Paul McCarthy, Troy Michie, Mary Ellen Mark, Walter Van Beirendonck, Keith Boadwee, Lucas Dillon & Leon Sadler.

I think their work is emotive, powerful, unique and always interesting.

 I am also very inspired by music and especially admire true individuals like Daniel Johnston, Yves Tumor, Dean Blunt, Vegyn, Aphex Twin, Laurie Anderson, Genesis P-orridge & the album “Chill Out” by The KLF.


^ Joshua Gordon, Untitled, 2019, Polaroid photo (signed on the reverse), 11.5 x 8.5 cm.

OTP What was the last text you received?

JG “It will become a way of life and you won't even have to think about it. 

Hang on in there sweetheart. X” - from my mum

OTP If you had to ask yourself a question as part of this interview what would it be?

JG Is there life after birth ? 

See more from Joshua Gordon:




Joshua Gordon's exhibition history includes: Butterfly, Komiyama Books, Tokyo (2019; solo), Butterfly, Spazzio Maiocchi (2019; solo).

Selected Publications:

Diary 1.5, 2018, New York: Catalogue Library, first edition of 50, second edition of 100

Jess, 2018, Zurich: Innen Books, first edition signed and numbered, edition of 150.

Diary 1, 2017, self-published, first edition signed and numbered, edition of 300.