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In an era of social confusion and visual pandemonium, David Levi Strauss tackles issues of photography and politics in a way that few critics today are courageous enough to attempt. The essays collected in Between the Eyes address topics ranging from propaganda and the imagery of dreams, to Sebastiao Salgado's epic social documents and the deeply personal photographic revelations of Francesca Woodman. Other issues broached here include the legitimacy of photographic imagery and the media frenzy surrounding the events of September 11, as well as essays on the work of Ania Bien, Miguel Rio Branco, Alfredo Jaar, Joel-Peter Witkin and others, plus an interview with painter Leon Golub (who worked from photographs). Reviewing the first edition of Between the Eyes, Publisher's Weekly wrote: "'Photography and Propaganda, ' a study of the work and deaths in '80s Central America of photojournalists Richard Cross and John Hoagland, should be required reading in the age of embeddedness, and 'Photography and Belief' is a terrific meditation on truth in the age of digital manipulation."
In his third book, Strauss delves into the mysterious process
whereby an idea is born in the mind and materialized through the
hand in the expression of an artwork. How exactly does this happen?
It's a question so basic, an act so fundamental to art-making, that
it has rarely received attention. It makes an ideal topic for
Strauss, a writer with an exceptional ability to animate art's
philosophical dimensions in a clear, persuasive manner. During this
time when craft and the direct manipulation of materials by the
artist appear to be in eclipse, Strauss comes to their defense in a
spirited cri de coeur.
Published in conjunction with the Documenta 13 exhibition in Kassel, Germany, the Documenta notebook series "100 Notes,100 Thoughts" ranges from archival ephemera to conversations and commissioned essays. These notebooks express director Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev's curatorial vision for Documenta 13.
At this transitional moment in the field of photography, how should we consider what is to come for the medium? Can its past and present practitioners help guide us, both as creators and as observers? David Levi Strauss-eminent author, critic, and teacher-rises to the challenge of these questions and more in Words Not Spent Today Buy Smaller Images Tomorrow: Essays on the Present and Future of Photographs. In the course of twenty-five essays, Strauss discusses the work of artists who provoke us with revealing, clear-eyed investigations of the ostensibly patent world in front of us, and others who transport us to new realms, poetic and unreal-creative minds ranging from Frederick Sommer, Helen Levitt, Daido Moriyama, and Joseph Beuys, to contemporary photographers Sally Mann, James Nachtwey, Susan Meiselas, Robert Bergman, Tim Davis, and many others. Also considered are the groundbreaking theoretical writings of Susan Sontag and Jean-Luc Nancy, the films of Chris Marker and Stan Brakhage, and issues and events that have irrevocably altered the way we consider the medium of photography and how it communicates: 9/11, Abu Ghraib, the death of Osama bin Laden, the Arab Spring, and Occupy Wall Street. Words Not Spent Today is an incisive exploration of photography's changing role as a tool of evidence and conscience as we move forward into-can we say it?-a post-photographic era.
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Nadine Gordimer Paperback (2)
Nadine Gordimer Paperback (2)