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Phaidon Press Inc.
From Library Journal
Eug ne Atget was a commercial photographer who spent 30 years producing more than 8000 pictures of Paris and its surrounding countryside before his death in 1927, when American photographer Berenice Abbott purchased his archives. Though he was unknown during his lifetime, his place in photography continues to grow; at times, he seems to be the Gallic brother of Walker Evans. Was Atget's aim to produce a kind of travel guide to a part of France he revered or to capture the elegance of places, courtyards, and gardens for wealthy clients? We will never know, but both of these books sum up the mystery of his intent and the serenity of his camera eye by describing his work as "enigmatic." Szarkowski, who may be our best navigator through images of lightDhe was director of the department of photography at MoMA from 1962 to 1991Dcarefully gathers 100 photographs, taking us through a sepia-toned era where Atget's silence abounds as he lovingly describes what the photographer captured. The Getty book, part of the museum's "In Focus" series, is less ambitious and might serve as a small but representative introduction to the special legacy of Atget. Useful descriptions accompanying each picture will help students, but the black-and-white reproduction and the two-column text make the images seem colder and the book less inviting than Szarkowski's sepia and margin-to-margin text. Where budgets allow, Szarkowski's approach to Atget is recommended, with the Getty version a second choice.DDavid Bryant, New Canaan Lib., CT
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
Picture Magazine, January 2001
This new collection of Atget's photographs shows his systematic, beautifully detailed work in all its splendor." --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Eugene Atget (1857-1927) took over 10,000 photographs of the trades, architecture and street scenes of Paris and its surroundings. Atget modestly called his images 'documents for artists'. Yet since his death, his reputation has grown into that of one of the world's pre-eminent photographers.
Other artists in this series include: Mathew Brady, Wynn Bullock, Julia Margaret Cameron, Joan Fontcuberta, David Goldblatt, Nan Goldin, Graciela Iturbide, Andre Kertesz, Dorothea Lange, Mary Ellen Mark, Joel Meyerowitz, Boris Mikhailov, Lisette Model, Laszlo Moholy-Nagy, Eadweard Muybridge, Eugene Richards, W. Eugene Smith, Shomei Tomatsu, Joel-Peter Witkin