The 'Saddam Hussein Watches' publication was made as Martin PARR's gift to festival goers... copies were distributed as part of the welcome pack to participants,
and given away to visitors to the Arles festival office during the opening week.
"I have long been fascinated by the way photography and society interact. We are bombarded with images every day and most of these are on billboards, magazines and even objects.
Over the years I have collected various forms of vernacular photography such as postcards, but more recently have expanded this collecting into objects.
Most of these watches originate from Iraq where many versions of watches with photographic portraits of Saddam have been manufactured.
Some of these are expensive Swiss made watches while some are relatively cheap. Saddam also had a penchant for giving away watches to both foreign guests and his own Republican Guard.
The final watches are anti Saddam ones made and produced in the USA. The watches mainly came from Iraqi markets, gathered not by Martin PARR
but by his photojournalism colleagues in Magnum at Martin PARR's request. Some came from ebay.
I think he may have had one or two from before the recent invasion of Iraq, but the vast majority were acquired in the last year. " (© Chris Boot, 2004)
- Loose-leaf publication in a metallic gold bag, 30,5 x 38 x 1 cm., 40 pp., color ills.,