About

powerHouse Books
Established 1995

powerHouse Arena
Established 2006

New York Photo Festival
Established 2008

powerHouse Books, world-renowned and critically acclaimed publisher, is best known for a diverse publishing program—specialized in fine art, documentary, pop culture, fashion, and celebrity books. We have blazed a trail through the staid book publishing industry, releasing books that have sparked cultural trends and redefined commonly held perceptions of the purpose and role of art books in contemporary culture. While much is known of our books, little is known of the people who have made powerHouse Books a global name.

Founder and Publisher Daniel Power started powerHouse Books in 1995, and was joined by Craig Cohen in 1996. The early years had Power and Cohen tag-teaming on a few books at a time, raising the bar each season when, in 1998, powerHouse Books had its first best-seller, Women Before 10 A.M. by Véronique Vial. Power and Cohen followed up that success in 1999 with the critically-acclaimed cult monographs X-Ray, by François Nars, and Life is Paradise, by Francesco Clemente and Vincent Katz.

In 2000, Cohen became a partner in the company, assuming the title of Vice President and Associate Publisher—now Executive Publisher. He quickly signed up the next company bestseller, Back in the Days by Jamel Shabazz, and in the same year developed a packaging deal with Capitol Records to produce the Beastie Boys Anthology: The Sounds of Science. With the publishing program growing rapidly, Power and Cohen hired Sara Rosen, who served as Publicity Director from 2000-2009.

The company has since redefined the cultural landscape of the illustrated book, the only U.S. independent publishing company to do so.

New York September 11 by Magnum Photographers was a visceral, instant document by Magnum and pH, the only thing a publishing company and a photo agency could do in helping the city and the country both remember and recover—Guiliani’s famous response to the terrorist attack was for New Yorkers to get back to doing what they do as quickly as possible. The book went on to sell some 300,000 copies worldwide, enabling powerHouse Books to donate over $600,000 to the New York Times 9/11 Neediest Fund.

In 2002, pH partnered with Nike to publish Sole Provider: 30 Years of Nike Basketball, a history of their famous sneaker line, which sold out in a record one week. “The relationships we’ve been able to form with corporate partners for branding and packaging has been one of the keys to our success over the past few years,” says Cohen, who worked with the The Gap to secure their promotional support for Alice Harris’ book, The Blue Jean, and with Olympus and Aveda, who supported Patrick McMullan’s 2004 book InTents. More recently, Cohen has worked with: international diamond titan De Beers, in support of Alice Harris’ second pH book, The Wedding Album; Puma, for The African Game; Ultimate Fighting Championship, for Octagon; Burton Snowboards, for 28 Day Winter; Glamour, for In Search of Hope by Mariane Pearl; Urban Outfitters, for a unique series of pH Classics; Danger Mouse and David Lynch, for Dark Night of the Soul; DC Shoes, for Blabac Photo; TBWA, for The Art of the Idea; and, Guy Oseary for both Madonna Confessions and Madonna: Sticky & Sweet.

In Fall 2006, powerHouse Books launched The powerHouse Arena, a laboratory for creative thought: exhibitions, installations, presentations, displays, viewings, performances, readings, and retail therapy—all drawing upon photography and popular culture as sources of inspiration. Located at 37 Main Street in the DUMBO section of Brooklyn, the 10,200–square foot marquis showroom and retail space is unlike any other in New York City, featuring a soaring 24-foot ceiling on the 5,000–square foot ground floor, and an equally impressive 5,000–square foot mezzanine, with over 175 feet of glass frontage, designed by esteemed architect David Howell Design. Attached by a central staircase is the Arena Skylounge, a 560 square-foot, mezzanine-level, multifunctional gallery, VIP lounge, and green room. These stunning spaces have hosted a series of landmark exhibitions and events, and are now available for private hire.

An utterly singular and unique space with floor views of the East River waterfront, and the breathtaking backdrop of the Brooklyn Bridge, Empire-Fulton Ferry Warehouse, and the stately Manhattan Bridge of early industrial-era Brooklyn (DUMBO), the Arena’s configuration is unmatched by any other in New York City. Events in The powerHouse Arena have attracted prominent press attention from outlets such as, The New York Times (weddings, book readings), The New Yorker (festival entertainment, book and foundation-sponsored panels), Time Out New York (exhibition rental and launch previews), New York magazine (book signings, musical and cabaret performances), and Vanity Fair (celebrity event launches).

Past events include: the St. Ann’s Warehouse after-party for the world premiere performance of Lou Reed’s Berlin; VH1′s Hip Hop Honors Week; The New Yorker Speakeasy; PEN World Voices; the National Book Foundation’s “5 Under 35″ event; the American Cancer Society fundraiser “Eat, Drink, Live”; the Wee CRAIC film festival; a Sarah Jessica Parker commercial shoot for Japan’s 100% Coke Light; and, The Vans: Off The Wall book launch (with indoor skateboarding). Past installations and exhibits include Nike’s RE-RUN launch; Boost Mobile’s All Writes Reserved exhibit; and, a legal defense fundraiser for graffiti artist Alan Ket. The powerHouse Arena has been the site of luminous and entertaining book discussions with authors and artists such as Paul Auster, Jessica Lange, and Irvine Welsh, and has also been the ticketing office and evening party locale for the New York Photo Festival.

In May 2008, powerHouse Books’ own Daniel Power with co-founder Frank Evers launched the first annual New York Photo Festival curated by Martin Parr, Kathy Ryan, Leslie Martin and Tim Barber. The second NYPH installment in 2009 was curated by Jody Quan, Bill Ewing, Chris Boot, and Jon Levy. The 2010 festival was curated by Vince Aletti, Erik Kessel, Fred Richtin, and Lou Reed.

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