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From Library Journal
To celebrate the centennial of Abbott's birth, the author has curated this show comprising the Museum of the City of New York's collection of 200 of the 307 prints that Abbott made between 1935 and 1939 in New York City with the support of the Works Progress Administration. Organized in eight geographical sections (e.g., Lower East Side, Greenwich Village, and Outer Boroughs), Abbott's views of New York contribute greatly to the documentation of the social, commercial, and architectural history of the city. Eugene Atget's approach to documenting cities with sparsely populated views of streets and shop fronts clearly shaped Abbott's own work in documenting New York City. Yochelson lays out such facts and analyses in an exceptionally well-written and carefully researched text that provides the most complete story to date of Abbott's life, artistic influences, and photographic contributions. The endnotes on each photograph are detailed and will be useful to photographers and city historians alike. Highly recommended for large academic and public libraries and for collections that specialize in the history of photography or New York City.?Kathleen Collins, Bank of America Archives, San Francisco
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.
The New Yorker
These canonical photographs have never before been so well presented.
The highly acclaimed, definitive collection of Abbott's popular New York photographs. Berenice Abbott (1898-1991) was one of this century's greatest photographers, and her New York City images have come to define 1930's New York. The response to The New Press's landmark hardcover publication of Berenice Abbott: Changing New York was extraordinary. In addition to receiving rave reviews, it was chosen a best book of the year by the Wall Street Journal, Business Week, and New York Newsday, and was featured in Vanity Fair, Newsweek, and the New York Daily News. A midwesterner who came to New York in 1918, Abbott moved to Paris in 1921 and worked as Man Ray's photographic assistant. Inspired by French photographer Atget, Abbott returned to America in 1929 to photograph New York City. With the financial support of the Works Progress Administration's Federal Art Project from 1935 to 1939, she was able to realize her ambition to document a "changing New York," a project that remains the centerpiece of her career. Now available for the first time in an affordable paperback edition, Berenice Abbott features more than 300 duotones, arranged geographically in eight sections tracing the photographer's New York City odyssey. It also includes 113 variant images, line drawings, and period maps, as well as an explanatory text, which explores Abbott's compositional choices, her artistic and historical preoccupations, and the history of New York.
- 307 duotones--the complete WPA project--more than 200 published here for the first time
- 113 halftones and line drawings, including period maps, technical drawings, and alternate prints
- An introductory essay on the life and work of Berenice Abbott
- Extended annotations distilled from the never-before-accessed WPA field notes