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"And if a day goes by without my doing something related to photography, it's as though I've neglected something essential to my existence, as though I had forgotten to wake up. I know that the accident of my being a photographer has made my life possible."-Richard Avedon, "(Avedon) is a passionate artist, always trying to climb inside his image. He gets there, too. It's a self-portrait in the eye of the beholder who is also, and so strenuously, beheld."-Thomas Hess, "Here, for instance, is all that I read in an Avedon photograph, the seven gifts it gives me: first of all, truth, the sensation of truth, the exclamation of truth; then character (pensivity, melancholy, severity, satisfaction, gaiety, etc.); then type (the politician, the writer, the executive); then Eros, a commitment, whether seductive or repulsive, to affect; then death, the corpse's vocation; then too the past, what has been caught, taken, can never come back again, can no longer be touched; lastly. . .lastly the seventh meaning, which is just the one which resists all the rest, the inexpressible supplement, the evidence that, within the image, there is always something else: the inexhaustible, the intractable element of Photography (desire?)." -Roland Barthes
This major new monograph stands as an important rediscovery of a small but central body of work in the career of one of the world's best known and beloved photographers. The Richard Avedon images presented here, many for the first time, were made in Paris for Harper's Bazaar during the 1950s. What is particularly special about this presentation is that the images are being reproduced to the exact scale of the engraver's prints made for Avedon by the master printer Andre Gremola, and are uncropped, on their original mounts, with all of the artist's notations on both front and back. Thus, they provide a remarkable portrait of the working methods of one of the most influential fashion photographers in history. This oversized book, measuring 12 x15 inches, is being printed without compromise with tritone plates throughout, and will be a stunning object in its own right.~With this body of work, which includes the photographer's iconographic Dovima with Elephants, Cirque d'Hiver, 1955, Avedon broke radical new ground in the history of photography. He documented the moment in which postwar France was striving through fashion to reclaim its cultural eminence. Judith Thurman, fashion writer for The New Yorker contributes the book's introduction.