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Monographs or surveys on the history of photography and notable photographers from the mid-19th Century to the present.

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Essays by Maria Morris Hambourg, Douglas Eklund, Jeff L. Rosenheim, & Mia Fineman, Walker Evans, New York, The Metropolitan Museum of Artassociation with Princeton University Press, 2000, first edition, large 4to (11 5/8" x 10 1/8"), HB, black cloth boards w/ silver gilt spine titles in b&w photographic dj, F / NF, signed by Jeff L. Rosenheim, assistant photography curator at The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

xiv, 332 pp., 365 illustrations( 141 duotones, 53 color plates, 171 halftones); bibliography, index. Essays by Maria Morris Hambourg, Douglas Eklund, Jeff L. Rosenheim, & Mia Fineman. Catalogue of a major retrospective exhibition mounted at The Metropolitan Museum of Art (Feb 1 - May 14, 2000; later traveled to San Francisco & Houston), which includes Evans' now archetypal photographs of the South, his captivating portraits of subway passengers, pedestrians, signs & traffic markings, objects, and material by Evans never previously published.

From Princeton University Press: "A tenant farmer's deprivation-lined face. Antebellum homes that have seen better days. The display windows of small-town main streets. The early subway commuter. Billboards. The images made by photographer Walker Evans (1903-1975) are icons of national identity that have shaped Americans' views of themselves and directly influenced important currents of modern art. This major catalogue--published to accompany a retrospective exhibition originating at The Metropolitan Museum of Art and traveling to San Francisco and Houston--presents the full range of Evans's work, from his 1920s black-and-white street scenes of anonymous urban dwellers to the color photographs of signs and letter forms from his final years.

Soon after he returned from Paris to New York City in 1927, Evans began contributing to the development of American photography. He captured the substance of people and buildings with a spare elegance that is utterly unpretentious. His gaze is serious but often amused as well, direct yet never simple. During the 1930s, Evans traveled throughout the South to chronicle the effects of economic hardship. The time that he and writer James Agee spent with Alabama sharecropper families yielded an evocative, honest record of the Great Depression, which was published in book form as Let Us Now Praise Famous Men (1941). Evans then turned his lens back on New Yorkers, photographing subway riders with a camera hidden in his coat. He continued to influence American self-perception as staff photographer for Fortune from 1945 until he accepted a professorship at Yale in 1965.

Evans--who always chose art over what he criticized as artiness--wrote, in Photography (1969), "Whether he is an artist or not, the photographer is a joyous sensualist, for the simple reason that the eye traffics in feelings, not in thoughts. This man is in effect a voyeur by nature; he is also reporter, tinkerer, and spy.

Although his work has received many awards, been enshrined in the best museums, and been exhibited on several continents, Evans's total corpus is only now being fully examined. This important book revises our appreciation of Evans by presenting previously unknown material in an accessible context. Essays by Maria Morris Hambourg, Jeff L. Rosenheim, Doug Eklund, and Mia Fineman offer novel insights into the sources and legacy of Evans's work. The result is a superb exploration of what was achieved by one of our finest, mostly deeply American artists."


From The Met: "A catalogue of the[Metropolitan]Museum's acclaimed exhibition, this is the first full-length study of the photographer drawing on archival material owned by the Museum. Walker Evan's (19031975) remarkably direct photographs of the American South, including Alabama sharecropper families of the 1930s, helped define America's image of itself. A clear-eyed observer of small town life, Evans also produced intriguing images of city dwellers in private isolation and chance encounters."

[These]"images have by now seeped so deeply into America's collective national unconscious that hardly anyone can visualize what the country looked like 75 years ago outside the context of Evans's iconic images." --Glenn McNatt, Baltimore Sun    [Book ID # 295]


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