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Walker Evans: Masters of Photography
Aperture
0893817414
September 1997
Hardcover
·
 
Review
"In Evans's world, even the inanimate things, bureau drawers, pots, tires, bricks, signs, seem waiting in their own patient dignity, posing for their pictures." --Lincoln Kirstein


Physics of Consciousness: The Quantum Mind and the Meaning of Life
Evan Harris Walker
0738204366
January 2001
Paperback
·
 
Book Review
It's not every day you hear a physicist ask what happens when we die. Evan Harris Walker, sparked by the early, tragic loss of his love, does just that and more in The Physics of Consciousness, a book in the same vein as Fritjof Capra's The Tao of Physics, but with a firmer grounding in scientific understanding. Walker marries the traditions of Southern literature--a longing for the past, a resignation toward the present, and a determined optimism about the future--to a technical explanation of the limits of materialism; a weird synthesis, certainly, but charming and engaging nonetheless. Since his primary topic is consciousness, Walker turns to neuroscience and Buddhism (its spiritual equivalent) for inspiration. His quantum-mechanical approach to synaptic transmission and "the speed of consciousness" are difficult to...


Walker Evans: Cuba
Walker Evans
0892366176
September 2001
Hardcover
·
 
From Publishers Weekly
In 1933, fledgling photographer Walker Evans was asked to make photographs of Cuban society for radical journalist Carleton Beals's book The Crime of Cuba, an expos‚ about Cuban dictator Gerardo Machado's corruption and Cuba's exploitation by the US. In Walker Evans: Cuba, from the collection at the Getty Museum, the 73 images of people, urban landscapes and Cuban business-as-usual seem influenced by Diego Rivera's politicized content, Hemingway's "stripped down, minimal style" and the "characteristic emptiness" of Eugene Atget's photography, says the Getty's Associate Curator Judith Keller in her introduction. This portrait of pre-Castro Cuba reminds viewers that Cuba has experienced social strife since early on, and that Cuban-U.S. relations have long been problematic. Poet and novelist Andrei Codrescu's...


Something Permanent
Cynthia Rylant
0152770909
May 1994
Hardcover
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From Publishers Weekly
As in Rylant's Soda Jerk , the subjects of this extraordinary and elegantly designed volume are ordinary moments in the lives of ordinary people. Rylant, responding to Evans's famous photographs of America during the Great Depression, pens spare, gem-like poems that tell stories--of a couple hitching a ride to the city, of a barber proud of his shop. Almost devoid of obviously figurative language, the poems are an expressive complement to the poignant images in Evans's ( Let Us Now Praise Famous Men ) stark photographs. Even when the camera focuses on an inanimate object, the poems hone in on the human heart. A photograph of a crooked mantel inspires a description of a woman who "knew about beauty and understood it." A picture of two empty iron beds speak to Rylant of a couple who "would turn toward each other,...


Walker Evans
Maria Morris Hambourg
0691050783
January 2000
Hardcover
·
 
Book Review
In 1926 Walker Evans dropped out of Williams College and arrived in Paris to launch his career as a writer. Though his life there revolved around the renowned Shakespeare and Company bookstore, a mixture of introversion and disdain for American culture kept him at a remove from the now famous expatriate circle of the era, the Fitzgeralds, Hemingway, the Murphys, and Joyce among them. He spent most of his time abroad alone and picked up his camera from time to time to document his immediate world, making images of his boarding room and his own shadow against a wall. When he returned to the States, Evans began to dedicate more time to his hobby, and by the end of his long career had established himself as one of the most important modernist photographers. Walker Evans, the catalog to the Metropolitan Museum of Art's...


Many Are Called
Walker Evans
0300106173
Oct 2004
Hardcover
·
 
Review
“Finally, today we have a re-issue of Many Are Called. It is truly a labor of love. This book is true to the look, feel, and spirit of the original. It does have a different cover, but includes a photograph of the original cover for reference. Two new texts have been added to the book. Luc Sante, the excellent writer and interpreter of photography, writes the foreword, while Jeffrey Rosenheim, the steward of this project, writes a historical sketch as an afterword. The pictures are reproduced in the same sequence as the original, and the reproductions, varnished duotones, rival the quality of the silver gelatin originals. Each plate is keyed to its date and Metropolitan Museum of Art accession number. The reproductions and the book itself are slightly enlarged in comparison with the first edition. Many Are Called has been...


Walker Evans
Walker Evans
030680008X
May 1988
Paperback
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Amazon.com
It's a well-kept secret that the Library of Congress oversees a collection of photographs numbering in excess of three million, the bulk of which are in the public domain. Among the highlights of that collection are Evans' remarkable images of the Depression era--part of a larger photographic project that employed Dorothea Lange and others--documenting the effects of soil erosion in Mississippi, the plight of Arkansas flood victims and the day-to-day lives of Alabama sharecroppers. The mood of the period is evoked strongly by nearly 500 photographs, many reproduced here for the first time; others are memorable for their inclusion in Let Us Now Praise Famous Men.


Random Family: Love, Drugs, Trouble and Coming of Age in the Bronx
Adrian Nicole LeBlanc
0743254430
January 2004
Paperback
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From Publishers Weekly
Politicians rail about welfare queens, crack babies and deadbeat dads, but what do they know about the real struggle it takes to survive being poor? Journalist LeBlanc spent some 10 years researching and interviewing one extended family-mother Lourdes, daughter Jessica, daughter-in-law Coco and all their boyfriends, children and in-laws-from the Bronx to Troy, N.Y., in and out of public housing, emergency rooms, prisons and courtrooms. LeBlanc's close listening produced this extraordinary book, a rare look at the world from the subjects' point of view. Readers learn that prison is just an extension of the neighborhood, a place most men enter and a rare few leave. They learn the realities of welfare: the myriad of misdemeanors that trigger reduction or termination of benefits, only compounding a desperate...


Walker Evans - Signs
Walker Evans (Photographer)
0892363762
August 1998
Paperback
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Book Review
For many people, Walker Evans's name conjures up visions of the rural American South of the 1930s, where the photographer made some of his most notable images. But signs--marking buildings; advertising grocery prices, churches, and cabarets; communicating political messages--transfixed him throughout his life. Evans was interested in all aspects of signs, from the typography and graphic layout to the messages they conveyed and the objects themselves. He collected nearly as many of them as he photographed and often exhibited actual signs alongside his photos. Andrei Codrescu, in the essay he wrote to accompany the images in Signs, offers a concise explanation of the power of this subject matter. He writes that Evans's era was, "the time of popular writing, of huge advertisements, of lettering that invaded every nook and...


Reading American Photographs
Alan Trachtenberg
0374522499
Nov 1990
Paperback
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Daniel Aaron, Harvard University
"Brilliantly elucidates how an informed cultural historian sees and interprets American images through the camera's eye."

Review
"Brilliantly elucidates how an informed cultural historian sees and interprets American images through the camera's eye."--Daniel Aaron, Harvard

"Alan Trachtenberg's Reading American Photographs gives fresh and fascinating insights into the household names of phototgraphic history."--Cornell Capa

"A splendid book [written with] learning and intellectual passion . . . thoroughly gratifying."--Alfred Kazin

"This is a must read for those interested in culture and politics. He brilliantly interprets the past for thepresent."--Wanda M. Corn, Standford University

"As Mr. Trachtenberg concludes, 'It is not...


Let Us Now Praise Famous Men
James Agee
0618127496
August 2001
Paperback
·
 
Book Review
Just what kind of book is Let Us Now Praise Famous Men? It contains many things: poems; confessional reveries; disquisitions on the proper way to listen to Beethoven; snippets of dialogue, both real and imagined; a lengthy response to a survey from the Partisan Review; exhaustive catalogs of furniture, clothing, objects, and smells. And then there are Walker Evans's famously stark portraits of depression-era sharecroppers--photographs that both stand apart from and reinforce James Agee's words.

Assigned to do a story for Fortune magazine about sharecroppers in the Deep South, Agee and Evans spent four weeks living with a poor white tenant family, winning the Burroughs's trust and immersing themselves in a sharecropper's daily existence. Given a first draft of the resulting article, the editors at Fortune quite...



Walker Evans
Belinda Rathbone
0395590728
June 1995
Hardcover
·
 
From Publishers Weekly
A college dropout after his freshman year, St. Louis-born photographer Walker Evans (1903-1975) moved to Paris for a year in 1926, then took a brokerage job on Wall Street, pursuing friendships with Hart Crane, James Agee, Ben Shahn, John Cheever, Lincoln Kirstein and others that nourished his art. His documentary studies of the rural South during the Depression evoke the dark side of the American dream with unsparing realism. The elusive, aloof photographer's vision of America as a junk culture of advertising, cars and dereliction may have roots in his troubled childhood, suggests Rathbone, a historian of photography, in an engrossing biography that penetrates Evans's wall of lofty reserve. Growing up in Chicago and Toledo, Evans saw through the false fronts of his father, an advertising executive, and his...


Walker Evans
James R. Mellow
0465090788
December 1901
Paperback
·
 
Book Review
Before his death in 1997, James Mellow left one last gracefully written, sensitively nuanced biography to add to a shelf containing National Book Award winner Nathaniel Hawthorne in His Times and a remarkable trilogy on seminal figures of the Lost Generation. Mellow's biography of photographer Walker Evans (1903-1977) is just as nimble in making connections between an individual life and the cultural trends it reflected and affected. Although he will always be best remembered for the austere images of Depression-era poverty that accompanied James Agee's prose in Let Us Now Praise Famous Men, Evans was a nondidactic social realist. "I love to find American vernacular," he once remarked, and Mellow's subtle analysis of Evans's work shows his fastidiously uninflected photographic style being mistaken for a "documentary." In...


Let Us Now Praise Famous Men
James Agee
0395957710
Mar 2000
Hardcover
·
 
Book Review
Just what kind of book is Let Us Now Praise Famous Men? It contains many things: poems; confessional reveries; disquisitions on the proper way to listen to Beethoven; snippets of dialogue, both real and imagined; a lengthy response to a survey from the Partisan Review; exhaustive catalogs of furniture, clothing, objects, and smells. And then there are Walker Evans's famously stark portraits of depression-era sharecroppers--photographs that both stand apart from and reinforce James Agee's words.

Assigned to do a story for Fortune magazine about sharecroppers in the Deep South, Agee and Evans spent four weeks living with a poor white tenant family, winning the Burroughs's trust and immersing themselves in a sharecropper's daily existence. Given a first draft of the resulting article, the editors at Fortune quite...



Walker Evans
Maria Morris Hambourg
0691119651
February 2004
Paperback
·
 
Book Review
In 1930 a disaffected young photographer in New York pointed his camera at two workers shoving a huge sign reading DAMAGED into a truck. With that image, Walker Evans gave birth to the quirky, edgy genre of street photography. Yes, this is the same Walker Evans famous for eye-level photographs of Alabama sharecroppers, rural churches and roadside signs. The special appeal of Walker Evans is that—in addition to nearly 200 classic photographs—it offers new images and fresh assessments of his work, based on diaries, letters, field notes and unpublished negatives acquired a decade ago by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. The engagingly written essays by four specialists all bump up against the contradictory impulses of this meticulous, aloof yet curiously passionate artist. A self-described "gray man," he...


Walker Evans
Belinda Rathbone
0618056726
Apr 2000
Paperback
·
 
From Publishers Weekly
A college dropout after his freshman year, St. Louis-born photographer Walker Evans (1903-1975) moved to Paris for a year in 1926, then took a brokerage job on Wall Street, pursuing friendships with Hart Crane, James Agee, Ben Shahn, John Cheever, Lincoln Kirstein and others that nourished his art. His documentary studies of the rural South during the Depression evoke the dark side of the American dream with unsparing realism. The elusive, aloof photographer's vision of America as a junk culture of advertising, cars and dereliction may have roots in his troubled childhood, suggests Rathbone, a historian of photography, in an engrossing biography that penetrates Evans's wall of lofty reserve. Growing up in Chicago and Toledo, Evans saw through the false fronts of his father, an advertising executive, and his...


Let Us Now Praise Famous Men, A Death in the Family, and Shorter Fiction
James Agee
1931082812
September 2005
Hardcover
·
 
From The Washington Post's Book World/washingtonpost.com
Like many of the world's most interesting books, James Agee's youthful masterpiece Let Us Now Praise Famous Men has a lot wrong with it. Upon its initial publication in 1941, critics savaged this account of "Three Tenant Families" as self-indulgent, tedious, overblown. Originally, Fortune magazine had commissioned Agee and photographer Walker Evans to report on the conditions of cotton farmers in Depression-era Alabama, but they killed the resulting article as unusable. Who could blame them? Certainly Agee's heated, self-exculpatory prose would have been more at home in The Masses than in Henry Luce's Fortune.But Agee couldn't forget the Ricketts, Woods and Gudger families. So he rewrote and further amplified his material, mixing in autobiography, reflections on art and society,...

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