After living for more then two decades in Chicago workings as a photographer and DJ, Barry Phipps and his wife relocated to the small town of Iowa City, Iowa. He found it a strange and wonderful feeling to know absolutely nothing about the towns and landscape that surrounded their new home. He started taking day trips in every direction. He became fascinated with small town Iowa life and systematically set out to photograph in every one of Iowa’s 99 counties.
The towns are the heart and soul of his Iowa series. Rather than an experience of new discovery town to town, it’s an experience of rediscovering the same palette of materials over and over again. These towns formed, thrived, peaked and decayed in the same time cycle, offering a consistent texture of line, form, color and cultural signifiers. With his background in art he documents Iowa with an eye for form, lines and color that celebrates small town life in Iowa.
His first published book of photographs Between Gravity and What Cheer: Iowa Photographs was published in May 2018 by The University of Iowa Press. His new book Guitarist Spared from a Blue Coat of Paint will be published by The University of Iowa Press in 2020.