Curator Juliet Hacking—former head of the photography department at Sotheby’s, and now program director at the Sotheby’s Institute—has sifted primary and secondary sources to write the thirty-eight short, opinionated profiles in Lives of the Great Photographers (Thames & Hudson, $50). Each begins with a portrait (or self-portrait), and includes one or two representative images as well, beautifully printed on glossy paper. Familiar names are here—Arbus, Atget, Brassaï, Capa, Kertész, and Cameron—but so are names that are less well-known, and whose stories are no less intriguing: Madame Yevonde, Shōmei Tōmatsu, Claude Cahun, Clementina Maude (Lady Hawarden), Gustave Le Gray, and Albert Renger-Patzsch. The biographies have a cumulative power: they are arranged alphabetically, and by leapfrogging decades, formal approaches, historical movements, and changing critical opinion, you can make your own connections between eras, yet also see the hard work of each individual finding his or her own style. To quote Roy DeCarava, from Hacking’s profile: “documentary photographer…people photographer, street photographer, jazz photographer, black photographer…there’s nothing wrong with any of those definitions. The only trouble is that I need all of them to define myself.”

Lives of the Great Photographers Cover Image
ISBN: 9780500544440
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Thames & Hudson - October 6th, 2015

“Striving to define photography as an art-form by a simple and direct presentation through purely photographic methods” exclusive of ideals derived from other fine arts, the seven members of Group f.64 (Bloomsbury, $35) proclaimed the future of photography in 1932. Much in this manifesto seems a given now, but when Adams, Weston, Imogen Cunningham, and others united in the name of the camera’s small aperture setting, what photography could and should do was hotly debated. In her combination history and group biography, Mary Street Alinder chronicles the mainly West Coast “pure photography” movement, revisiting exhibits and arguments as the form came into its own. Her book is as much a chronicle of the 1930s themselves as it is of photography, as she documents the rigors of the Great Depression. Dedicated to making beautiful pictures, the artists also confronted the suffering around them and, inspired foremost by Dorothea Lange, widened the scope of photography’s mission to include social engagement. A photographer herself, Alinder illuminates the technical side of her subject with details about cameras, lenses, exposure times, and paper. She has worked directly with several of the original Group f.64 members, and her portraits convey the wonderfully vivid figures behind the images.

Group f.64: Edward Weston, Ansel Adams, Imogen Cunningham, and the Community of Artists Who Revolutionized American Photography Cover Image
ISBN: 9781620405550
Availability: Out of Print in This Format
Published: Bloomsbury USA - November 4th, 2014

Group F.64: Edward Weston, Ansel Adams, Imogen Cunningham, and the Community of Artists Who Revolutionized American Photography Cover Image
ISBN: 9781620405567
Availability: Out of Print in This Format
Published: Bloomsbury USA - June 7th, 2016

The stunning three-volume National Geographic: Around the World in 125 Years (Taschen, $499) speaks for itself, but here are a few details: a slip-cased set, this limited edition contains some 1,500 pages of images, from autochromes to Kodachromes to digital photos. The featured photographers include Steve McCurry, Frans Lanting, James Nachtwey, and scores of others. The terrain is global, starting in America and the Antarctic, moving through Europe and Africa, and winding up in Asia and Oceania. The truly ground-breaking photo-essays are complemented by no less pioneering and authoritative articles, which as well as covering nature, travel, and culture, chart the constantly changing story of how we view the world. With full access to National Geographic’s archives, Taschen has delivered a fittingly monumental commemoration on this beloved magazine’s 125th anniversary.

National Geographic. Around the World in 125 Years Cover Image
By Reuel Golden (Editor), Benedikt Taschen (Editor)
ISBN: 9783836549981
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Taschen - December 1st, 2013