The Island Position
The "Island Position" is an advertising term that describes the premium position of an advertisement surrounded solely by editorial content.
In The Island Position, John Lehr explores the facades of American commercial spaces that are threatened by the emergence of e-commerce. In a rush to remain relevant, storeowners emblazon their windows and walls with anything that will grab attention. They repaint, renovate, rebrand, and rearrange, gestures which point to the desires and anxieties of people who are being left behind as our thumbs lead us into the new economy.
The work presents a turning point in our cultural landscape: the transition from a physical culture to a virtual one. Masquerading as a typology of storefronts, the surfaces in The Island Position embody something unseen: the people who constructed them. The signage is not simply an appeal to consumption, but a typography of emotion: vulnerability, ingenuity, distress, and hope-the language of capitalism as a form of public address.
Lehr is not interested in what is for sale. He is interested in what is at stake.
Includes a short story by George Saunders
Paperback, 112 pages
Publisher: Mack (31 March 2019)
29 x 22cm