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Phlogger aka Andrew Walmsley

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“Launderama” by Joshua Blackburn – a book review

For this article, we look at another book from the wonderful team at Hoxton Mini Press. One from another new photographer to their label and aimed again around the area of London. So let’s get started and see what all the fuss is all about.

launderama by joshua blackburn - front cover
Launderama cover

The author

Joshua Blackburn is from London, UK and briefly talks about commuting across London for his son’s football. It’s very hard to get to know a person from one of their books when you’ve never seen their work before. But to me, this is not a criticism or anything bad, it’s a fantastic feeling finding new and interesting work like this.

According to the author’s notes, he worked in design but he set up the Artful Project Gallery as co-founder and lives with his family and a hamster.

launderama by joshua blackburn - picture of inside a washing machine
Washing machine detail

The book

So as we now the book “Launderama” by Joshua Blackburn is all about a plan to capture all the 462 laundrettes in London. Hoxton has printed this in their usual amazing hardback binding of approx 145 pages (with index). I haven’t measured it but would say it’s roughly a5 size.

Hoxton’s books are always printed in the heavy binding so will definitely stand the test of time and compliment the colours with the author’s pictures. They seem to have a lovely understanding of layout, font and text placement too. Honestly, I adore looking through their books and have many more on my Christmas list!

launderama by joshua blackburn - picture of coin slot
Washing machine details

The images

Well, what can you say, other than wow! Joshua’s has done something so unique and presented these photos as a story. The images show an array of styles, including the shop fronts to detailed shots of small elements to through to signs!

It’s a set of images that would suit a documentary style, but without the context of many people. But Joshua talks briefly about some of the people and involves himself with them.

They definitely fit Hoxton’s ethos of handing this book down to someone, as it will hold historical consequences. As Joshua includes, this industry (laundrette) is in decline so capturing it now is very prevalent before it disappears like many others before it.

Personally, my favourites are the detail work, where Joshua captures the doors and dials of the washing machines. They are as he describes – from a different period where it feels the design was important.

launderama by joshua blackburn - back cover
Launderama back cover


Launderama by Joshua Blackburn – you might find it silly or dull, a book about laundrettes, but as someone who appreciates street photography, this is similar to me. It’s documenting something mundane, but using the eye of a photographer to present it in a fashionable way.

Put it this way, I loved it that much I have reached out to Joshua to become a guest on my podcast show. So fingers crossed if we can sort dates it will happen, so watch this space.

If you want to know more about Joshua – Instagram link

If you want to check out Hoxton – website link

If you want to check out my podcast show – iTunes link


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Other reviews

Derren Brown’s street photography book – link here

Photoklassik analogue magazine – link here

The audition small film review – link here