The Book of 101 Books by Richard Benson and Andrew Roth (ed.) – Seminal Photographic Books of the 20th Century.
Boekrecensie door Erik Scheffers uit Utrecht.
“The book of 101 books” is een boek over boeken, beter gezegd een fotoboek over fotoboeken. Zoals de titel al aangeeft worden er in dit boek in totaal 101 fotoboeken besproken.
Van ieder besproken fotoboek staan 2 of 4 blz. met daarop een foto van de omslag van het boek, een of meer foto`s van bladzijden uit het besproken boek, een inleiding over het boek en wat gegevens over het boek.
In zijn voorwoord schrijft Andrew Roth dat het hem te doen is om boeken die als geheel een kunstwerk vormen. Ik heb eerder de 2 boeken “The photobook a history” van Gerry Badger en Martin Parr gelezen die dit boek als voorbeeld hebben gebruikt. Een aantal fotoboeken wordt in beide boeken besproken.
Van de boeken die besproken worden heb ik alleen “Diary of a century” van Jacques-Henri Lartigue in mijn bezit en verder heb ik slechts 3 andere boeken in mijn handen gehad: “The Americans” van Robert Frank en “Een liefdesgeschiedenis in Saint Germain des Prés” en “Jazz” van Ed van der Elsken.
Het boek is mooi uitgevoerd en stimuleert tot het bekijken van een aantal fotoboeken die ik nog niet kende.
The Book of 101 Books is een vrij moeilijk verkrijgbaar boek. Vaak wordt er meer dan 200 dollar voor gevraagd. Een tip voor als u boeken zoekt die niet nieuw meer verkrijgbaar zijn is het volgende lijstje met tweedehands boekenwebsites:
About Richard Benson:
Van de hand van Richard Benson komt ook het prachtige fotoboek: A Yale Album, The Third Century (isbn 9780300087239). This engaging photograph album of 1,3 kilgrams of Yale`s third century contains a rich and surprising assortment of pictures selected by the photographer Richard Benson. Punctuated with essays by past and present notables of the Yale community and by Benson`s own commentary, the album moves from Old Yale at the turn of the century to challenges facing the university in the new millennium.
The people, events, objects, and settings encountered along the way have contributed to the making of the Yale experience in the twentieth century.Published on the occasion of Yale University’s tercentennial celebration, the album opens with the bicentennial years and a charming evocation of college life before World War I.
The next section chronicles the great building boom on campus (including the transition to a residential college system) prompted by the generous bequests of John Hay Whitney, John Sterling, and Edward S. Harkness. A campus transformed by world events is depicted in sections on Yale between the wars and during World War II.
About midway through the volume and the century, the focus turns to campus life, including athletics, the growth of the arts, the political turmoil of the sixties and seventies, and the advent of coeducation.
Following a photo essay on life at Yale today, the album concludes, as does Yale each academic year, with the ebullient rituals and regalia of commencement. For all those who are, were, or hope to be part of the Yale community, Benson has created an exceptional memento from the bounty of Yale`s archives.
Richard Benson, Dean of the School of the Arts at Yale University and internationally acclaimed expert on photographic printing, follows the developments in the art of printing from the photogravure to the new digital technologies in his 5,000 word essay “Photography in Print.”
Mr. Benson has spent his working life as a photographer, printer, and teacher. He has photographed extensively throughout the United States, first as a view camera photographer with an 8×10-inch camera and presently with a handheld high-end digital camera. His current photographic work is in color, printed with an ink-jet printer in multiple impressions.
His photographs in platinum, silver, ink, and ink jet are in many collections including the Museum of Modern Art and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York as well as the Yale University Art Gallery. His work as a printer involved research into traditional photographic printing processes as well as developmental work for photo-offset reproductions of black-and-white photographs.
He has made the separation negatives for and overseen the printing of many books, among them works by Lee Friedlander, Eugène Atget, and Paul Strand. He made the film separations and also printed the plates for Photographs from the Collection of the Gilman Paper Company, published by the White Oak Press in 1985. In 1973 Mr. Benson co-authored Lay This Laurel (Eakins Press) with Lincoln Kirstein and in 1997 co-authored A Maritime Album (The Mariners Museum, Newport News, Virginia) with John Szarkowski. In 2001 he authored A Yale Album (Yale University Press) and in 2008 The Printed Picture (Museum of Modern Art).
His work as a photographer and printer has been supported by the Eakins Press Foundation, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. From 1996 to 2006 he was dean of the Yale School of Art, where he has taught since 1979. He is presently a professor (adjunct) of photography. (information provided by Yale).
About The Book of 101 Books:
The Book of 101 Books is published by Andrew Roth and includes over 500 full color plates with essays by eight renown authors: Vince Aletti, Richard Benson, May Castleberry, Jeffrey Fraenkel, Daido Moriyama, Shelley Rice, David Levi Strauss and Neville Wakefield.
The history of the photographic book goes back well more than a century; the medium of photography and the book format were understood very early on to relate to each other on both technical and aesthetic levels.
The examples of truly great combinations of photographic image and text, great design and typography bound together as books are numerous, and make up an impressive artistic, social, and documentary statement of the 20th century.
Writer and rare book expert Andrew Roth has selected for this volume a group of 101 of the best photography books ever published: books that bring all of the elements of great bookmaking together to create, ultimately, a thing of beauty, a work of art. Mostly made up of publications in which the photographs were meant to be seen in book form, as opposed to the book being merely a repository of images, this list includes many artists and titles that will be familiar to the collector, but also not a few surprises.
Chronologically, the first book is Volume One of Edward Curtis’s seminal 1907 The North American Indian, the last is David LaChapelle’s LaChapelle Land from 1996, and in between are books by Walker Evans and Berenice Abbott, Atget and Brassai, Robert Frank and Garry Winogrand, and many other seminal photographers from all over the world.
Each book in the catalogue receives a double page spread including publication information, several image spreads, and a short text about it. The Book of 101 Books, however, is far more than simply an annotated and illustrated catalogue.
Six important new essays on a variety of related topics from respected scholars, critics, and artists are included as well: here you will find Richard Benson on thehistory of printing techniques, Shelley Rice on the societal significance of photography books, May Castleberry on reprints, exhibitions, and keeping books alive for the public; Daido Moriyama on his personal memories of making his classic Bye Bye Photography, Dear, Neville Wakefield on the particular attributes of one of the most recent books in this group: Richard Princeis 1995 Adult Comedy Action Drama, and Jeffrey Fraenkel on the myriad perils of publishing photography books.
The catalogue entries themselves are written by the well known critics Vince Aletti and David Levi Strauss. Taken together, the depth and beauty of these essays and images makes The Book of 101 Books both an essential reference and an aesthetically compelling object.
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