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From the Publisher
Over a period of seven years Leist traveled across America, photographing people from Rochester to Key West and from New York City to Los Angeles. Before making a portrait the photographer asked each person to provide him with a childhood photograph. This childhood image often supplied the initial visual framework for Leist 's portrait. The essays, which accompany each pair of portraits, reveal the subjects', own views on their life, and what it means to be an American. Like America itself, the book presents a diverse tableau of race and background, youth and experience, native born and immigrant, capturing the complex mix of America 's contemporary society. "An extraordinary encounter with recent American experience. ". Alan Trachtenberg
About the Author
Reiner Leist lives in New York and teaches photography at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, Mass. His previous books are South Africa: Blue Portraits and Window.
Reiner Leist .New World
American Portraits 1910- 2001
Essays by Vicki Goldberg, Claus Leggewie, Christoph Menke and Alan Trachtenberg Interview by Susanne Baumann
Reiner Leist 's most ambitious photographic project to date, New World provides a unique look at America through portraits of its people. What makes this collection so unusual is its highly original biographical dimension -for each of Leist 's portraits is juxtaposed with a childhood portrait of the same person. The sense of poignancy created by the correspondences between childhood photograph and Leist 's portrait is further enhanced by autobiographical essays, which shed light on the individuals'often-colorful lives.
Henry Louis Gates Jr.
Joseph Medicine Crow