Photography History and Criticism
Featured Items
Looking Backward: A Photographic Portrait of the World at the Beginning of the Twentieth Century
Looking Backward
A Photographic Portrait of the World at the Beginning of the Twentieth Century
Hardcover      ISBN: 039323973x

Pull the yellowed card from the box and slide it into the viewer. Two binocular images, nearly identical, reveal a scene from the past in vivid, three-dimensional detail. Transcending space and time, the card shows the world as it existed in 1900, a moment when technology collapsed borders; when wars ignited between great powers; when natural forces brought disaster on surging, vulnerable cities--a moment very much like our own.

In 1900 the stereograph was king. Its three-dimensional optics created a virtual presence for the viewer. Millions of Americans, especially schoolchildren, absorbed ideas about race, class, and gender from such 3D images, the embodiment of the notion that "seeing is believing." Drawing on an enormous, rarely seen collection of some 300,000 stereographic views spanning the first decade of the twentieth century, Michael Lesy presents nearly 250 images displaying a riot of peoples and cultures, stark class divisions, and unsettling glimpses of daily life a century ago.

Like Lesy's landmark works of American macabre, Wisconsin Death Trip and Murder City, Looking Backward slides the reader into suspended animation. Haunting views of the early twentieth century's most significant events at home and in the farthest reaches of the world--war, rebellion, industrial revolution, and natural catastrophe--flank pictures of the last remnants of the premodern natural world. Lesy's evocative essays reassert the primacy of the stereograph in American visual history. He profiles the photographers who saw the world through their prejudices and the companies that sold their images everywhere. In underscoring the unnerving parallels between that period and our own, Looking Backward reveals a history that shadows us today.

Eudora Welty's Fiction and Photography: The Body of the Other Woman
Eudora Welty's Fiction and Photography
The Body of the Other Woman
Hardcover      ISBN: 0820348708

Drawing on the context in which the protection of the white female body is linked with guarding the U.S. southern body politic, Harriet Pollack traces a pattern in Eudora Welty's fiction in which a sheltered middle-class daughter is disturbed or delighted by an other-class woman who takes pleasure in "making a spectacle" of her corporeal self.

Welty herself seeks a parallel self-exposure both through these stories that pair protected girls with at-risk flashers and through her photography's innovating representations of the black female body. Welty's escape from sheltering continues when, after finding herself in love with a man unwilling to acknowledge his homosexuality and so sharing the silence of his closet, she varies the plot of the other woman in a series of midcareer fictions.

Additionally, Pollack addresses several critical controversies spawned by Welty's handling of other women's bodies. These concern the comic woman writer's relationship to issues of class and feminism, her puzzled-over and sometimes joyful rape plots, and her handling of race in fictions written when her region was immersed in its Jim Crow regulation of the black body. Two special features of the book are its significant reading of sixty-two visual images and its extensive work with Welty's unpublished manuscripts, in particular those begun during the turmoil of the civil rights struggle in the 1960s and continuing through the 1980s.
The Kiss of Apollo: Photography & Sculpture 1845 to the Present
The Kiss of Apollo
Photography & Sculpture 1845 to the Present
Hardcover      ISBN: 0938491660
A World History of Photography
A World History of Photography
3rd Edition    Paperback      ISBN: 0789203294

Encompasses the entire range of the photographic medium, from the camera lucida to up-to-date computer technology, and from Europe and the Americas to the Far East. The text investigates all aspects of photography - aesthetic, documentary, commercial and technical - while placing it in historical context. It includes three technical sections with detailed information about equipment and processes. This edition also updates important new international work from the 1980s and 1990s.

Bryan Peterson's Understanding Composition Field Guide: How to See and Photograph Images with Impact
Bryan Peterson's Understanding Composition Field Guide
How to See and Photograph Images with Impact
Paperback      ISBN: 0770433073

Learn to "see" more compelling images with this on-the-go field guide from Bryan Peterson

What makes an image amazing? Believe it or not, it is not about the content. What makes a photo compelling is the arrangement of that content--in other words, its composition. The right composition gives your images impact and emotion; the wrong one leaves them flat. In this handy, take-anywhere guide, renowned photographer, instructor, and bestselling author Bryan Peterson frees amateur photographers from the prejudices of what is "beautiful" or "ugly" so that they can instead focus on color, line, light, and pattern. Get the tools you need to show your distinct voice and point of view in every image you shoot. With this guide in your camera bag, you'll be equipped not only to "see" beautiful images but to successfully shoot them each and every time.

Also available as an ebook
Instant: The Story of Polaroid
Instant
The Story of Polaroid
Hardcover      ISBN: 1616890851

"Instant photography at the push of a button " During the 1960s and '70s, Polaroid was the coolest technology company on earth. Like Apple, it was an innovation machine that cranked out one must-have product after another. Led by its own visionary genius founder, Edwin Land, Polaroid grew from a 1937 garage start-up into a billion-dollar pop-culture phenomenon. Instant tells the remarkable tale of Land's one-of-a-kind invention-from Polaroid's first instant camera to hit the market in 1948, to its meteoric rise in popularity and adoption by artists such as Ansel Adams, Andy Warhol, and Chuck Close, to the company's dramatic decline into bankruptcy in the late '90s and its unlikely resurrection in the digital age. Instant is both an inspiring tale of American ingenuity and a cautionary business tale about the perils of companies that lose their creative edge.

The Extended Moment: Fifty Years of Collecting Photographs at the National Gallery of Canada
The Extended Moment
Fifty Years of Collecting Photographs at the National Gallery of Canada
Hardcover      ISBN: 8874398026

A sumptuous celebration of one of the world's most striking photograph collections from 1967 to 2017. This publication celebrates fifty years of collecting photographs at the National Gallery of Canada. In 1967, when the collection was established, the photography market was in its infancy and the collection reflects the availability of in-depth collections of work by some of the forefathers of the medium such as Charles N gre, William Henry Fox Talbot, Gustave Le Gray and Roger Fenton, among others. Within a few short years of starting to build the collection the science of photographic preservation and conservation was making remarkable strides and influencing the acquisition and exhibition of photographs in museums. This publication celebrates the collecting of photographs, the historical and art historical context of their making and the deepening of our understanding of their physical nature. The work of 164 artists, such as: Benoit Aquin; Diane Arbus; Eug ne Atget; Nicolas Baier; Edouard Baldus; Brassa ; Julia Margaret Cameron; Henri Cartier-Bresson; Lynne Cohen; Benjamin John Dancer; Walker Evans; Robert Frank; Lee Friedlander; Isabelle Hayeur; Arnaud Maggs; Robert Mapplethorpe; John Max; Lisette Model; Eadweard Muybridge; Charles N gre; William McFarlane Notman; Marc Ruwedel; Jospeph Sudek; William Henry Fox Talbot and vernacular and news photographs by unknown photographers will also be included.

The Bitter Years: Edward Steichen and the Farm Security Administration Photographs
The Bitter Years
Edward Steichen and the Farm Security Administration Photographs
Hardcover      ISBN: 1935202863
The Bitter Years was the title of a seminal exhibition held in 1962 at The Museum of Modern Art, New York, curated by Edward Steichen, and 2012 marks its fiftieth anniversary. The show featured 209 images by photographers who worked under the aegis of the U.S. Farm Security Administration (FSA) in 1935-41, as part of Roosevelt's New Deal. The FSA, set up to combat rural poverty during the Great Depression, included an ambitious photography project that launched many photographic careers, most notably those of Walker Evans and Dorothea Lange. The exhibition featured their work as well as that of ten other FSA photographers, including Ben Shahn, Carl Mydans and Arthur Rothstein. Their images are among the most remarkable in documentary photography--testimonies of a people in crisis, hit by the full force of economic turmoil and the effects of drought and dust storms. This volume includes all the photographs in the original show, in a structure and sequence that reflect those devised by Steichen for the exhibition. The Bitter Years was the last exhibition curated by Steichen as Director of the Department of Photography at MoMA, in which role he had won international acclaim for his 1955 The Family of Man exhibition. Essays by Jean Back, Gabriel Bauret, Ariane Pollet, Miles Orvell and Antoinette Lorang discuss the FSA, its place in the history of twentieth-century photography and the continuing role of its archive, and Steichen and the origins, impact and legacy of the exhibition. The Bitter Years celebrates some of the most iconic photographs of the twentieth century, and--since no proper catalogue was produced at the time--provides a whole new insight into Steichen's impact on the history of documentary photography.
The Early American Daguerreotype: Cross-Currents in Art and Technology
The Early American Daguerreotype
Cross-Currents in Art and Technology
Hardcover      ISBN: 0262034107

The American daguerreotype as something completely new: a mechanical invention that produced an image, a hybrid of fine art and science and technology.

The daguerreotype, invented in France, came to America in 1839. By 1851, this early photographic method had been improved by American daguerreotypists to such a degree that it was often referred to as "the American process." The daguerreotype--now perhaps mostly associated with stiffly posed portraits of serious-visaged nineteenth-century personages--was an extremely detailed photographic image, produced though a complicated process involving a copper plate, light-sensitive chemicals, and mercury fumes. It was, as Sarah Kate Gillespie shows in this generously illustrated history, something wholly and remarkably new: a product of science and innovative technology that resulted in a visual object. It was a hybrid, with roots in both fine art and science, and it interacted in reciprocally formative ways with fine art, science, and technology.

Gillespie maps the evolution of the daguerreotype, as medium and as profession, from its introduction to the ascendancy of the "American process," tracing its relationship to other fields and the professionalization of those fields. She does so by recounting the activities of a series of American daguerreotypists, including fine artists, scientists, and mechanical tinkerers. She describes, for example, experiments undertaken by Samuel F. B. Morse as he made the transition from artist to inventor; how artists made use of the daguerreotype, both borrowing conventions from fine art and establishing new ones for a new medium; the use of the daguerreotype in various sciences, particularly astronomy; and technological innovators who drew on their work in the mechanical arts.

By the 1860s, the daguerreotype had been supplanted by newer technologies. Its rise (and fall) represents an early instance of the ever-constant stream of emerging visual technologies.

The History of Photography: Fifth Edition
The History of Photography
Fifth Edition
Paperback      ISBN: 0870703811

Since its first publication in 1937, this lucid and scholarly chronicle of the history of photography has been hailed as the classic work on the subject. No other book and no other author have managed to relate the aesthetic evolution of the art of photography to its technical innovations with such an absorbing combination of clarity, scholarship and enthusiasm. Through more than 300 works by such master photographers as William Henry Fox Talbot, Timothy O'Sullivan, Julia Margaret Cameron, Eug ne Atget, Peter Henry Emerson, Alfred Stieglitz, Paul Strand, Alvin Langdon Coburn, Man Ray, Edward Weston, Dorothea Lange, Walker Evans, Ansel Adams, Brassa , Henri Cartier-Bresson, Harry Callahan, Minor White, Robert Frank and Diane Arbus, author Beaumont Newhall presents a fascinating, comprehensive study of the significant trends and developments in the medium since the first photographs were made in 1839. New selections added to the fifth edition include photographs made in color, from hand-tinted daguerreotypes of 1850 to turn-of-the-century autochromes by Edward Steichen, to works by contemporary masters such as Eliot Porter, Ernst Haas, William Eggleston, Stephen Shore and Joel Meyerowitz.Beaumont Newhall (1908-1993) was an influential curator, art historian, writer and photographer. In 1935 he became the Librarian at The Museum of Modern Art, New York. In 1940, he became the first Director of MoMA's Photography Department. He served as Curator of the International Museum of Photography at the George Eastman House from 1948 to 1958, then as its Director from 1958 to 1971. While at the Eastman House, Newhall was responsible for amassing one of the greatest photographic collections in the world.