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Mann's work is quite controversial in circles where nudity and innocence do not overlap. She offers 65 black-and-white photographs of her children doing children's things in and around their rural Virginia home. An exhibition of the collection began a US tour in October 1992. Includes an afterword by writer Reynolds Price. No scholarly paraphernalia. 11.25" deep. Annotation copyright Book News, Inc. Portland, Or. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
"[Mann's photographs] suggest that the camera is as adept at depicting the desires of the subconscious as it is in rendering the shapes of everyday life."--Andy Grundberg, The New York Times
"[Sally Mann] makes pictures of children-- luminously beautiful black-and-white images of mysteriously elfin children around [her] rural home in Lexington, Virginia. These are riveting, enigmatic narrative images...."--Ken Johnson, Art in America
"Sally Mann continues to probe the intimate life of her family... read more
"These are photographs of my children....Many of these pictures are intimate, some are fictions and some are fantastic, but most are of ordinary things every mother has seen. I take pictures when they are bloodied or sick or naked or angry. They dress up, they pout and posture, they paint their bodies, they dive like otters in the dark river."--Sally Mann, from the Introduction
Taken against the Arcadian backdrop of her woodland home in Virginia, Sally Mann's extraordinary, intimate photographs of her children-- Emmett, Jessie, and Virginia-- reveal truths that embody the individuality of her immediate family and ultimately take on a universal quality. Mann states that her work is "about everybody's memories, as well as their fears," a theme echoed by Reynolds Price in his eloquent, poignantly reflective essay accompanying the photographs in Immediate Family.
With sublime dignity, acute wit, and feral grace, Mann's pictures explore the eternal struggle for autonomy-- the holding on, and the breaking away. This is the stuff of which Greek dramas are made: impatience, terror, self-discovery, self-doubt, pain, vulnerability, role-playing, and a sense of immortality, all of which converge in Sally Mann's astonishing photographs.
A traveling exhibition of Immediate Family, organized by Aperture, opened at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Philadelphia in the Fall of 1992.