Humanity of the Moment – Photography Recent Picks

Hip Hop At The End of the World book cover

“There is one thing the photograph must contain, the humanity of the moment.” — Robert Frank

Explore the humanity of these moments; from the ‘Beat Generation’ to Victorian giants of photographic exploration, go from Ground Zero NYC to life in Venice with Peggy Guggenheim and witness the evolution of Hip Hop through the lens of Brother Ernie. Turn the pages and open a window to another time and place with these latest picks from our new photography books.

Hip-hop at the end of the world : the photography of Ernie Paniccioli / Paniccioli, Ernie
“With more than 250 images of artists including Ice Cube, The Notorious B.I.G., N.W.A, Lauren Hill & TLC, many that have never before been published, this book is set to become the new hip-hop photography bible. With exclusive, behind-the-scenes access, preeminent photographer Brother Ernie captures the last four decades of the evolution of hip-hop, the styles that grew from it, and the artists who shaped it.” (Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Joel Meyerowitz : where I find myself : a lifetime retrospective / Meyerowitz, Joel
“Organized in inverse chronological order and spanning his whole career to date. This book covers all of Meyerowitz’s great projects: his work inspired by Morandi, the exclusive coverage of Ground Zero, his trips in the footsteps of Robert Frank and of course his iconic street photography. Joel Meyerovitz is incredibly eloquent and candid about how photography works or doesn’t, and this is an inspiration for all interested in photography.” (Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Destinations
“For the first time, Gourmet Traveller has compiled a collection of its most dazzling travel photography. Visit some of the world’s most beautiful and exotic places through the lenses of the world’s finest photographers. Traverses the globe making stops along the banks of the Yangzi River, on the streets of Cuba and at the grand turquoise minarets of Uzbekistan. Immerse yourself in the architecture, the food and the culture of the places you’ve been to and the ones you long to visit.” (Catalogue)

I see a city : Todd Webb’s New York / Webb, Todd
“A rich portrait of the everyday life and architecture of New York, Webb’s work is clear, direct, focused, layered with light and shadow, and captures the soul of these places shaped by the friction and frisson of humanity. Published on the occasion of the exhibition Todd Webb’s New York at the Museum of the City of New York, this book restores the reputation and legacy of a forgotten American artist.” (Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Encounters with Peggy Guggenheim / Moses, Stefan
“In Encounters with Peggy Guggenheim, renowned photographer Stefan Moses reveals his collection of photographs of Peggy, taken between 1969 and 1974, many of which have never been seen before. Striking, eccentric, and dramatic, Moses photographed Peggy in her favorite places around Venice, as well as in her private palazzo at Canal Grande. An inspiration for art-, photography- and fashion-lovers alike, take a behind-the-scenes look at of one of the world’s most eccentric and inspirational women.” (Catalogue)

The Beat scene / Glinn, Burt
“Featuring a remarkable collection of largely unseen photographs of the ‘Beat Generation’ by renowned Magnum photographer Burt Glinn, these photographs manage to capture the raw energy of a generation in a way that has never been seen before in print. Shot between 1957 and 1960 in New York and San Francisco, the images feature nearly everyone involved in the scene, including Allen Ginsberg and Jack Kerouac, poets like Gregory Corso and William Morris, and many more.” (Adapted Syndetics Review)

Double take : the world’s most iconic photographs meticulously re-created in miniature / Cortis, Jojakim
Double Take presents forty astonishingly accurate reconstructions of iconic photographs–ranging from the earliest known to the world’s most expensive. These images have been painstakingly re-created in miniature by two photographers, Jojakim Cortis and Adrian Sonderegger.” (Adapted Syndetics Summary)

Victorian giants : the birth of art photography : Julia Margaret Cameron, Lewis Carroll, Clementina Hawarden, Oscar Rejlander / Prodger, Philip
“Bringing together the works of four of the most celebrated figures in art photography, Lewis Carroll (1832-98), Julia Margaret Cameron (1815-79), Oscar Rejlander (1813-75) and Clementina Hawarden (1822-65), these four artists would come to embody the very best in photography of the Victorian era. Featuring striking portraits of sitters such as Charles Darwin, Alice Liddell, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Thomas Carlyle and Lord Tennyson.” (Adapted Syndetics Review)

Feast your eyes on our latest Photography books

Feast Your Eyes

Don’t you just love all the pretty colours? Allow our most recent photography books to highlight the beauty of the colours all around us. Look back on iconic images re-imagined with colour, or look closer at the beauty of your fruit and vegetables. Look through the lens and delve into lives of people on the street, in the past, in the deep south, or the arctic circle. Take a look at these exquisite photography books and see something you have never seen before.

Book Jacket for: Feast your eyesFeast your eyes / Wright, Brittany
“Inspired by the effortless beauty of her ingredients; fresh fruits, vegetables, and more, Wright created the Instagram hashtag #foodgradients to showcase the splendor of nature’s edible rainbows. Each exquisite, neatly ordered photograph is a pleasure to get lost in. With a sleek, minimalist design, Feast Your Eyes is a celebration of the earth’s bounty, a breath of fresh air, and an inspiration for everyone looking for joy in the simple things.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Book Jacket for: Retrographic : history's most exciting images transformed into living colourRetrographic : history’s most exciting images transformed into living colour / Carroll, Michael D
“The the careful selection of striking images and dedicated colourization research, Retrographic  will take you on a visual tour of the distant past. Many of these moments are already burned into our collective memory through the power of photography as shared by people across the 190-year long age of the Image. And now, these visual time capsules are collected together for the first time and presented with living colour. (Book Jacket)

Book Jacket for: The street philosophy of Garry WinograndThe street philosophy of Garry Winogrand / Dyer, Geoff
“Modeled on John Szarkowski’s classic book Atget, The Street Philosophy of Garry Winogrand is a masterfully curated selection of one hundred photographs from the Winogrand archive at the Center for Creative Photography, with each image accompanied by an original essay. This inimitable combination of photographer and writer, images and text, itself offers what Dyer claims for Winogrand’s photography–an education in seeing.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Book Jacket for: Wander love : lessons, tips and inspiration from a solo travellerWander love : lessons, tips and inspiration from a solo traveller / Daquinag, Aubrey
“Author Aubrey Daquinag is a travel blogger and photographer, most often found posting her adventures on her blog ‘The Love Assembly’ from all corners of the globe. Featuring her incredible photography that shows you a world where travel meets style, Wander Love is the perfect mix of style, substance and travel adventures to inspire your own.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Book Jacket for: Real estate photography for everybodyReal estate photography for everybody / Castle, Ron
“In this book, Ron Castle introduces you to the skills you need to succeed in real estate photography. You’ll gain insight into some basics of the business, and you’ll learn what kind of equipment you’ll need to do the job. You’ll also learn  what not to photograph, how to produce strong compositions, and find suggestions for an efficient and effective post-processing workflow.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Book Jacket for: Berenice Abbott : a life in photographyBerenice Abbott : a life in photography / Van Haaften, Julia
“Abbott’s 60-year career established her not only as a master of American photography but also as a teacher, writer, archivist, and inventor. A teenage rebel from Ohio, Abbott escaped to Paris before returning to New York as the Roaring Twenties ended. Turning later to science, culminating in work important to America’s 1950s “space race”. This biography secures Abbott’s place in the histories of photography and modern art while framing her accomplishments as a female artist and entrepreneur.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Book Jacket for: I am InuitI am Inuit / Adams, Brian
“For around four million people, the Arctic region is neither a curiosity, nor is it untouched wilderness: It is home. Since 2015, photographer Brian Adams has been traveling through Alaska, capturing the Inuit and their individual stories. This project has the aim of promoting understanding, dismantling stereotypes as well as misperceptions and connecting the world with Alaskan Inuits, and the Arctic, through common humanity.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Book Jacket for: Sally Mann : a thousand crossingsSally Mann : a thousand crossings
“Using her deep love of her homeland (Virginia) and her knowledge of its historically fraught heritage, she asks powerful, provocative questions about history, identity, race, and religion-that reverberate across geographic and national boundaries. Organized into family, landscape, battlefields, legacy, and mortality-and including many works not previously exhibited or published, this is a sweeping overview of Mann’s artistic achievement of the past four decades.” (Catalogue)

Book Jacket for: 1968 : a revolutionary year in photographs1968 : a revolutionary year in photographs
“1968 has gone down in history as the year of social and political movements, of global protests against the existing social model. Tens of thousands marched the streets, calling for an end to war and oppression. There were space missions and epochal murders, while Hippie culture and the Beat Generation ran wild and the wave of pacifism conquered the theater. This book presents images which best represent 1968 in every context. The talent of the best photographers of the time, retraces and recounts this fateful year, so full of major events.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Book Jacket for: Flora magnifica : the art of flowers in four seasonsFlora magnifica : the art of flowers in four seasons / Azuma, Makoto
“This sumptuous book is the product of a longstanding collaboration between renowned flower artist Makoto Azuma and botanical photographer Shunsuke Shiinoki. The result is a series of dense, luxuriant images, rich in colour and texture, in which nature and artifice are skilfully mingled. The four chapters are themed according to the cycle of the seasons: the freshness of spring, the exuberance of summer, the fading grandeur of autumn and the deepening shadows of winter.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

10 Books to Help You Reach Your Photography Goals in 2018!

This new year you could become the photographer you’ve always dreamed you could be! Whether you want to be “instafamous” for your epic travel photos, launch that online business or just take better photos of your food. Reach for the stars, literally, have a go at astro-photography, or fine tune your existing skills with exposure, whatever your focus, these 10 books will help you scratch “become an awesome photographer” off your New Year’s resolutions list!

Syndetics book coverFashion & lifestyle photography : succeed in the commercial world and become a stand-out photographer / Dixie Dixon.
“Based on the talks Dixie Dixon, a Nikon Brand Ambassador, has given to crowds at major US trade shows, she reveals how to succeed in this exciting marketplace. From finding your vision, to building your dream team, this book will provide you with the essential gear and know-how to capture the looks of the media world that leap off the page or screen.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverLonely Planet’s guide to travel photography / Richard I’Anson.
“Written by internationally renowned travel photographer Richard I’Anson, he shares his wealth of experience and knowledge about travel photography in photorecentthis jargon-free guide to taking better photographs. Thoroughly updated and refreshed with advice, information and instructions on how to take amazing travel photographs using the latest digital cameras. It also includes tips on how to get great results from smartphones, DSLR cameras, drones and GoPro action cameras.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverFood photography : a beginner’s guide to creating appetizing images / Corinna Gisseman.
“Whether you want to create great food images for your blog or break into the world of commercial food photography, Food Photography is the perfect place to start your journey. Corinna Gissemann, a professional food photographer, walks you through everything you need to know, starting with a primer on equipment and exposure, followed by a detailed explanation of the extremely important roles that light, composition, and styling play in food photography.” ( Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe five-minute fix : 200 tips for improving your photography and growing your business / Dale Benfield.
“Unlike many books for “beginners,” Dale takes photographers from the beginning stages and continues nurturing them into starting a business and becoming a professional. His approach of providing a lot of bite-sized chunks of information on photography techniques, business, and marketing in one book is truly unique. For the photographer who wants both business and photography knowledge, this single book takes the place of two!” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverComplete photography : the all-new guide to getting the best possible photos from any camera / Chris Gatcum.
“Whether you’re a complete beginner, a casual snapper or a seasoned photographer, there is a lot to be learned from this extensive photography guide. Take the guesswork out of your photography and understand not just what to do with your camera, but how and why this affects the photos you take. Whether you own an SLR, film camera or a compact digital camera, learn how to take the best photos possible.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe art of astrophotography / Ian Morison, Jodrell Bank, University of Manchester.
“Join astronomer and columnist Ian Morison as he provides the essential foundations of how to produce beautiful astronomical images. From images of the Moon and planets, to the constellations, star clusters and nebulae, journey through a series of worked examples and short project walk-throughs, detailing the equipment needed, starting with a DSLR, camera and tripod, and increasing in complexity as the book progresses.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe smartphone photography guide : shoot, edit, experiment, share / Peter Cope.
“Smartphones have put powerful cameras, literally, in our pockets and encouraged us to document our lives in ever-increasing detail. But do we realize their full potential? Instructive, inspirational and updated with all the latest on VR, selfies, and the best apps, become the best photographer you can be! Suitable for all general smartphone users, compatible with iOS, Android, and Windows phones.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverPhotography exposure / David Präkel.
“Offering a detailed guide to using exposure for expressive purposes, this is an invaluable reference tool to all students and practitioners of photography.The second edition includes new images, as well as all new case studies and practical assignments – using examples from a range of international artists. The book has also been updated and restructured to take into account the technical innovations since it first published in 2009.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverOne face, fifty ways : the portrait photography ideas book / Imogen Dyer & Mark Wilkinson.
“Whichever side of the camera you like to be on, this book will show you how – with some simple camera techniques and inexpensive items of wardrobe – you can revolutionize your portfolio. You won’t need to spend a fortune on props, studios or equipment; learn how to create an exciting, varied portfolio of fresh portrait photography.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe practical illustrated encyclopedia of digital photography : step-by-step guide to taking great photographs / Steve Luck.
“Expert advice from starting out to advanced computer techniques, with practice assignments and 1000 photographs.” (Syndetics summary)

What the soul feels: 10 new Photography books

They say, that photography, like art, it is less what the eye sees and more what the soul feels, and we couldn’t agree more. So whether your soul feels the mists of the mountains, the droplets of water from a dog shaking his coat, vintage cameras, cityscapes, fashion, selfies or satellite imagery, we’ve got you covered! Check out these 10 new photography books from our collection.

Syndetics book coverPawtraits / Ken Drake.
Pawtraits is a stunning photographic collection capturing man’s best friends at their most adorable, playful, mischievous and downright lovable selves. Each shot is an artwork, a beautiful, personal ‘tail’ of the love between a dog and their human, captured in Zoo Studio’s signature style.  Animal lovers & photographic art connoisseurs alike will fall in love with this book. A portion of the sales of Pawtraits will be donated to the RSPCA.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverPhotographs from the edge : a master photographer’s insights on capturing an extraordinary world / Art Wolfe with Rob Sheppard
“Legendary nature photographer Art Wolfe presents an intimate, behind-the-scenes guide to the experiences, decisions, and methods that helped him capture images from some of the most exciting locations across the globe. From endangered species to cultural celebrations to natural wonders, Wolfe brings each subject to life through his stunning photography and the stories he shares in this one-of-a-kind photo safari.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverI love my selfie / essay by Ilan Stavans ; auto-portraits by ADÁL.
“What explains our current obsession with selfies? In I Love My Selfie noted cultural critic Ilan Stavans explores the selfie’s historical and cultural roots by discussing everything from Greek mythology and Shakespeare to Andy Warhol, James Franco, and Pope Francis. He sees selfies as tools people use to disguise or present themselves as spontaneous and casual. Provocative and engaging, this book will change the way readers think about this unavoidable phenomenon of twenty-first-century life.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMagnum photobook : the Catalogue Raisonné / texts by Fred Ritchin & Carole Naggar.
“Including unpublished behind-the scenes material, together with ephemera from the photographers’ archives about the making of their books. With an introduction by Fred Ritchin and texts by Carole Naggar, this book explores the evolution of the photobook, as well as the important role that Magnum has played in the history of documentary photography.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverAging gracefully : portraits of people over 100 / Karsten Thormaehlen.
“A beautiful and fascinating exploration of what it is like to be over 100 years old, Aging Gracefully invites readers to look into the face of a century of life experience with portraits of centenarians captured by the compassionate, minimalist lens of photographer Karsten Thormaehlen. The striking photographs are accompanied by short bios of the centenarians, featuring quotes and wisdom on love, food, humor, and living with grace.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverOn reading / Steve McCurry ; foreword by Paul Theroux.
“Young or old, rich or poor, people everywhere read. This homage to the beauty and seductiveness of reading brings together a collection of photographs taken by Steve McCurry over four decades of travel and is introduced by award-winning writer, Paul Theroux. McCurry’s mesmerizing images of the universal human act of reading are an acknowledgement and tribute to the overwhelming power of the written word.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverEarth from space / by Yann Arthus-Bertrand ; translated from the French by Nicholas Elliott ; GoodPlanet Foundation.
“With more than 150 breathtaking satellite photographs, Yann Arthus-Bertrand, an aerial photographer and environmental activist, discusses the impact of deforestation, urban sprawl, ocean pollution, and more. Earth from Space ‘s compelling selection of satellite images raises important questions about our future, while showcasing the planet’s beauty, leaving no doubt that it is something crucial to protect.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverErik Madigan Heck : old future / texts by Justine Picardie and Susan Bright.
“In contemporary fashion photography, Erik Madigan Heck is something of an anomaly – a very successful anomaly who steers his own path. His work is elegant and unashamedly beautiful, exploring the intersections of fashion, painting and classical portraiture. Working with natural light and combining in-camera effects with digital post-production, he produces evocative and seductive images that are both timeless and futuristic.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverRetro photo : an obsession : a personal selection of vintage cameras and the photographs they take / David Ellwand.
“From the pinhole to the Pentax, Retro Photo: An Obsession is a visual journey through the history of photography, highlighting some of the iconic cameras of the analog era. At once an accessible guide to vintage cameras, a highly personal take on photographic history, and a celebration of classic design, here is a book that takes the fear out of old-style photography and puts the fun back in.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverNew York serenade / Ciro Frank Schiappa, photographs ; Michele Primi, texts.
New York Serenade is homage to the city of New York. The project consists of fifty pictures that share stories we believe are relevant to describe the continuous changing of the historical sites, the urban landscape, and the different forms of art that the city itself produced over the years. Our aim is to write a story about history, art, music, and New York City, and create a journey through this tradition, around historical places that are holding memories of the past while the future is written somewhere else.” (Adapted Syndetics summary)

The humanity of the moment: Recent Photography books

Taking an image, freezing a moment, reveals how rich reality truly is. — Anonymous

Art has the power to humanise the world, and we think some of the descriptors of this month’s photography books show how photography especially exhibits this power: “quiet but powerful”, “a beautiful and fascinating exploration”, and so many more. This month: read about how a new generation of young women artists are using photography and the internet to explore issues of self-image and female identity and the impact this is having on contemporary art, learn how to produce beautiful astronomical images, see portraits that capture the thoughtful and innocent side of London’s teenagers, and fall in love with 52 wise, healthy, and joyful 100-year-olds.

Syndetics book coverGirl on girl : art and photography in the age of the female gaze / Charlotte Jansen.
“A new generation of female artists is emerging who have grown up in a culture saturated with social media and selfies. This book looks at how young women are using photography and the internet to explore issues of self-image and female identity, and the impact this is having on contemporary art. Forty artists are featured, all of whose principal subject matter is either themselves or other women. Each is accompanied by a short profile based on personal interviews with the author, giving a fascinating insight into this exciting shift in female creativity.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe art of astrophotography / Ian Morison, Jodrell Bank, University of Manchester.
“In The Art of Astrophotography, astronomer and Popular Astronomy columnist Ian Morison provides the essential foundations of how to produce beautiful astronomical images. Every type of astroimaging is covered, from images of the Moon and planets, to the constellations, star clusters and nebulae within our Milky Way Galaxy and the faint light of distant galaxies. He achieves this through a series of worked examples and short project walk-throughs, detailing the equipment needed – starting with just a DSLR (digital single lens reflex) camera and tripod, and increasing in complexity as the book progresses.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book cover…isms : understanding photography / Emma Lewis.
“Isms: Understanding Photography packs an enormous amount of detail into a handy, attractive guide tracing the evolution of photography through a series of interconnected trends, groups, themes and movements – from the invention of the photographic process to the post-internet age. Organised chronologically, this is a uniquely international, comprehensive guide to photography with concise, readable and jargon-free but scholarly insight into major photographers, movements and themes of the past 170 years.In an age where photography is of more resonance and interest than ever before, Isms: Understanding Photography offers an in-depth and clear exposition of photography for the interested general reader or student.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverLondon youth / Julian Mährlein.
“This is a quiet but powerful project capturing the thoughtful and innocent side of London’s teenagers. Too often, inner city kids are portrayed in a negative light or through the lens of fashion photography. Mahrlein’s portraits remind us of the humanity and individuality of a generation that is often overlooked or vilified.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe photo ark : one man’s quest to document the world’s animals / Joel Sartore ; foreword by Harrison Ford ; introduction by Douglas H. Chadwick.
“The lush and unique photography in this book represents National Geographic’s Photo Ark, a major initiative and lifelong project by photographer Joel Sartore to make portraits of the world’s animals–especially those that are endangered. His powerful message, conveyed with humor, compassion, and art: to know these animals is to save them. Sartore is circling the globe, visiting zoos and wildlife rescue centers to create studio portraits of 12,000 species, with an emphasis on those facing extinction. With a goal of photographing every animal in captivizty in the world, he has photographed more than 6,000 already and now, thanks to a multi-year partnership with National Geographic, he may reach his goal.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverAging gracefully : portraits of people over 100 / Karsten Thormaehlen.
“Fall in love with 52 wise, healthy, and joyful 100-year-olds in this celebratory and uplifting art book. A beautiful and fascinating exploration of what it is like to be over 100 years old, Aging Gracefully invites readers to look into the face of a century of life experience with portraits of centenarians captured by the compassionate, minimalist lens of photographer Karsten Thormaehlen. The striking photographs are accompanied by short bios of the centenarians, featuring quotes and wisdom on love, food, humor, and living with grace.” (Syndetics summary)

Cuba people two : more street photography from Cuba Street Wellington, Aotearoa-New Zealand / Mary Hutchinson.
Mary Hutchinson is a Wellington based photographer who enjoys photographing urban areas. This is the book accompaniment to her 2017 Cuba People Two exhibition, at Matchbox Studios, Wellington. (Information obtained from artist’s website)

May Photography

In a field still dominated by men, photography of women and by women feature more than usual in this month selection. Serendipitous,  refreshing and inspiring.

Syndetics book coverWomen of vision : National Geographic photographers on assignment / foreword by Ann Curry ; introduction by Chris Johns.
“For 125 years, National Geographic has documented the world and all that is in it with stunning photography that captures the soul of a story beyond the words on a page.
Some of the most powerful narratives of the past decade have been produced by a forward-thinking generation of women photojournalists as different as the places and the subjects they have covered. But they all share the same passion and commitment to storytelling that has come to define National Geographic.
Women of Vision was curated by National Geographic Senior Photo Editor Elizabeth Krist, who had the challenging task of choosing a selection of images to best represent the broad portfolios of the 11 extraordinary photographers.
Women of Vision is a tribute to the spirit and the ambition of these journalists and artists who have created riveting experiences for millions through the insightful, sensitive, and strategic use of a camera. From the last great wildernesses of Africa to the tumult of the Jersey Shore, these stories explore the realities of our world and the depths of what it means to be human in the 21st Century. These women of vision have taken millions with them on assignment through the pages of National Geographic–and in the process have set a new standard for excellence that will continue to inspire for decades to come.” (From book jacket)

Syndetics book coverVisible : 60 women at 60 / photography by Jenny O’Connor.
“Photographer Jenny O’Connor was born in 1952, the year that the highest number of births was recorded in New Zealand. She, and the women who feature in Visible, are part of the ‘baby boom’ generation. In 2011, as Jenny headed toward her 60th birthday in 2012, she began to wonder how other women nearing this same milestone felt about themselves, how society saw them and what their thoughts about their future were. Jenny’s desire to explore these questions was how this book began; by talking to 60 women who were 60 when she took their photograph. The words are theirs, writing whatever each wanted to say about themselves.” (Library catalogue)

Syndetics book coverThe New Yorkers / Robert Herman ; foreword by Sean Corcoran ; essay by Stella Kramer.
“The New Yorkers is a glorious look at a city bursting with color and life. It is a body of work full of frozen moments, serendipity and reflection. Through Robert Herman s work we recognize the New York we knew and the New York we still know today. His street photography freezes people and places in this city at decisive moments, with spontaneity and authenticity. In The New Yorkers the city waves at us, looks us right in the eye and brushes past us, without seeing. It layers images upon images like the best graffiti–always renewing and reforming itself. Stella Kramer, Pulitzer prize-Winning Photo Editor.
The New Yorkers is Robert Herman s astounding collection of photographs of New York City, shot between 1978-2005 on Kodachrome. The book immortalizes the transformation of Soho, Little Italy, Greenwich Village and the Lower East Side. These photos tell an authentic story of New York City: real New Yorkers living and working in their own neighborhoods. In Herman s bold use of light and composition, he effectively transforms everyday subject matter into vibrant, emotion-filled images. But beyond the stunning photography, it also tells another story: that of Herman s battle with bipolar disorder. A physical representation of the empathy Herman had for his subjects while struggling with his own sense of outsiderness is what makes The New Yorkers of interest to all who know and love the city as well as those who want to know it.” (From amazon.com)

Syndetics book coverFrançois Halard / texts by François Halard and Isabelle Dupuy Chavanat ; edited by Beda Achermann and François Halard.
“This extravagant volume is the magnum opus of today’s most celebrated interiors photographer. One of François Halard’s first assignments, to photograph Yves Saint Laurent’s legendary Paris apartment when he was in his early twenties, cemented his reputation as one of the most original eyes of our era. His unique photographic sensibility—old-world elegant and bohemian, accessible and personal—is instantly recognizable. Thirty years later, Halard still captures our imagination with his breathtaking photographs.Included in this highly anticipated volume are Halard’s images of the glorious homes of the most important tastemakers, artists, and designers of the twentieth century: Axel Vervoordt, Roger Vivier, Richard Avedon, the Duchess of Devonshire, Julian Schnabel, Schiaparelli, Carlo Mollino, Balthus, Coco Chanel, Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé, and many more, including Halard’s own homes in New York, Paris, and Arles. Photographed in his inimitable “grand manner,” often for Vogue, this book also shows for the first time the more intimate “house portraits” that Halard would photograph for himself, where his personal vision shines through. François Halard will be a coveted, indispensable resource for all lovers of interior style and a master class in visual education.” (From amazon.com)

5110VVQEl8L__SX258_BO1,204,203,200_Butch / Kanithea Powell ; photography by Beverli Alford.
“From award-winning film-maker Kanithea Powell, Butch is a lavish book that attempts to redefine the concept of “butch” through a series of photographs shot in a sleek fashion studio style, challenging traditional butch identity and shedding some new light on what it means today.” (Library catalogue)

Syndetics book coverLegendary : inside the house ballroom scene / photographs by Gerard H. Gaskin ; with an introduction by Deborah Willis, and an essay by Frank Roberts.
“Gerard H. Gaskin’s radiant color and black-and-white photographs take us inside the culture of house balls, underground events where gay and transgender men and women, mostly African American and Latino, come together to see and be seen. At balls, high-spirited late-night pageants, members of particular “houses”—the House of Blahnik, the House of Xtravaganza—”walk,” competing for trophies in categories based on costume, attitude, dance moves, and “realness.” In this exuberant world of artistry and self-fashioning, people often marginalized for being who they are can flaunt and celebrate their most vibrant, spectacular selves.From the quiet backstage, to the shimmering energies of the runway. to the electricity of the crowd, Gaskin’s photographs take us to the ball. Legendary, comprised of photos taken at events in the New York city area, Philadelphia, Richmond, and Washington, D.C., is a collaboration between Gaskin, a camera-laden outsider who has been attending balls for twenty years, and the house members who let him enter the intimate world of ball culture. In addition to an introduction by Deborah Willis, Legendary includes an essay, “The Queer Undercommons,” by Frank Roberts.” (Dust jacket)

Syndetics book coverUnderwater photography : art and techniques / Nick Robertson-Brown.
“Capture an underwater world of glorious colours, extraordinary creatures and mysterious depths.
Underwater photography is a challenging discipline. To capture stunning images you must have confidence in your diving abilities and be very comfortable with your camera. This practical book explains and offers advice to the reader on both the art and the science involved in capturing underwater shots.
Nick-Robertson-Brown is passionate about marine wildlife. Having trained as a diving instructor, he now teaches underwater photography and regularly contributes to the photographic press.” (Back cover)

Syndetics book coverKen Duncan : life’s a journey : the adventure continues / Ken Duncan.
“This spectacular volume has been more than thirty years in the making. Featuring many never-before-seen photos, plus a host of stories untold until now, Ken Duncan: Life’s a Journey is a magnificent and yet passionate “commentary on life” from one of the world’s great photographers.
Part autobiography, part travelogue and part reflection, this is a book of wonderful variety and range. There’s humour, drama, anecdote and heart-searching. Every spread is illustrated by Ken’s superb images: from the Aussie outback to Africa, from Antarctica to China – and much more.
This book is in many ways a follow-up to Ken’s acclaimed 2008 volume Ken Duncan: Life’s an Adventure. That book surprised and thrilled readers, who read for the first time many of the stories behind Ken’s career. For Ken, the greatest accolade came when he heard of a farmer whose life had (quite literally) been saved by reading the book. Ready to take his own life after two years of destructive floods, the farmer had happened upon Ken’s volume in the farmhouse; he’d been completely turned around by Ken’s personal story of chaos leading to hope.
Ken Duncan: Life’s a Journey continues in this tradition, telling more – much more – of the unique Ken Duncan story. Ken’s passion is to speak honestly to his own generation – in the midst of a world often gripped by fear of financial crisis, terrorism or environmental catastrophe.
As Ken writes: “Daily we have choices to make: Will we live our lives in faith or fear? I choose faith. Who will join me in this peaceful revolution?”” (From dust jacket)

Syndetics book coverTransformational imagemaking : handmade photography since 1960 / Robert Hirsch.
“Transformational Imagemaking: Handmade Photography Since 1960 is a groundbreaking survey of significant work and ideas by imagemakers who have pushed beyond the boundaries of photography as a window on our material world. These artists represent a diverse group of curious experimentalists who have propelled the medium’s evolution by visualizing their subject matter as it originates from their mind’s eye. Many favor the historical techniques commonly known as alternative photographic processes, but all these makers demonstrate that the real alternative is found in their mental approach and not in their use of physical methods. Within this context, photographer and photography historian Robert Hirsch outlines the varied approaches these artists have utilized to question conventional photographic practices, to convey internal realities, and to examine what constitutes photographic reality. Hirsch explores the half-century evolution of these concepts and methodologies and their popularity among contemporary imagemakers who are merging digital and analog processes to express what was thought to be photographically inexpressible.” (Back cover)

Out of space odysseys, the world of make-believe and fairytales

From this month title, one could wonder whether this post is really about photography, or whether I am taking a cynical view of the role of photography. The truth is, photography as this month’s post will demonstrate, allows us to delve in the wonders of the universe around us, thanks to the technological feats of space travel. It also gives the most creative amongst us, the license to create a world of fantasy and extravagance, by arranging, composing, altering, juxtaposing, hiding and revealing, collaging and using any other clever means to create the desired image. The issue of photography and truth has long been debated. Even the “straightest” photograph is in some way a manipulation of reality. So once we are at peace with this fact, we can explore the world of possibilities at our disposal as some of this month’s books illustrate brilliantly.  

Planetfall 
“Thanks to the photographic output of a small squadron of interplanetary spacecraft, we have awakened to the beauty and splendor of the solar system. Since Michael Benson’s masterful book Beyond: Visions of the Interplanetary Probes, new, more powerful cameras in probes with greatly improved maneuverability have traversed the wheeling satellites of Jupiter; roamed the boulder-strewn red deserts of Mars; studied Saturn’s immaculate rings; and shown us our own ravishing Earth, a blue-white orb with a disturbingly thin atmosphere, as it plunges deeper into ecological crisis. Benson takes raw data from NASA and European Space Agency archives and processes it, creating large-format landscapes. He edits, composites, then frequently mosaics, and then finally optimizes these images, producing seamless digital C prints of landscapes beyond direct human experience. These new images are the subject of Benson’s Planetfall, a truly revelatory book that uses its large page size to reproduce the greatest achievements in contemporary planetary photography as never before”. (Adapted from publisher)

For a comprehensive review of the book, you may want to read Rebecca J. Rosen’s article in The Atlantic, complete with photographs and a link to Michael Benson’s current exhibition at the Hasted Kraeutler gallery in New York.

And on the subject, if you have missed the beautiful moonrise over Wellington on 29 January, here is an amazing video of the celestial display. 

Faking it – Manipulated Photography before Photoshop
“It is a long-held truism that ‘the camera does not lie’. Yet, as Mia Fineman argues in this illuminating volume, that statement contains its own share of untruth. While modern technological innovations, such as Adobe’s Photoshop software, have accustomed viewers to more obvious levels of image manipulation, the practice of “doctoring” photographs has in fact existed since the medium was invented. In “Faking It”, Fineman demonstrates that today’s digitally manipulated images are part of a continuum that begins with the earliest years of photography, encompassing methods as diverse as overpainting, multiple exposure, negative retouching, combination printing, and photomontage. Among the book’s revelations are previously unknown and never before published images that document the acts of manipulation behind two canonical works of modern photography: one blatantly fantastical (Yves Klein’s “Leap into the Void” of 1960); the other a purportedly unadulterated record of a real place in time (Paul Strand’s “City Hall Park” of 1915). Featuring 160 captivating pictures created between the 1840s and 1990s in the service of art, politics, news, entertainment, and commerce, “Faking It” provides an essential counterhistory of photography as an inspired blend of fabricated truths and artful falsehoods.”–Publisher’s website.

syndetics-lcJonathan Becker – 30 years at Vanity Fair
“Over three decades with Vanity Fair, Jonathan Becker has photographed some of the most fascinating characters from the rarefied worlds of art, literature, politics, pop culture, and society, capturing the personality and individuality of the subjects he celebrates. Assignments for the magazine have dispatched Becker far and wide—from the Amazonian jungle to Buckingham Palace”. (from amazon.com)

For a sneek peek of the photographs collected in this mammoth of a book, visit the Vanity Fair’s slideshow dedicated to this new publication.

syndetics-lcTim Walker, Story Teller
“Famed fashion photographer Walker shares a new collection assembled from the world’s most famous magazines (including Vogue, Vanity Fair, W, the New Yorker, a follow-up to 2008’s Pictures, which you can also find in our collection timed to coincide with a major exhibition at Somerset House in London, that will be held until end of January 2014 (for those who might be heading that way in the coming 12 months). Aided by an introduction by Robin Muir, foreword by Kate Bush, and Walker’s own afterword, these extravagantly choreographed, fantastical images never fail to deliver a jolt. They are usually disconcerting, and often have a downright wonderful sense of humor and play, as in a human windup doll. A holdout for shooting on film, Walker has an uncanny gift for stretching a moment and playing with time. This strength perhaps explains the cheeky dignity he lends his elderly subjects, whose portraits temper Walker’s usual archness with a welcome humanity. His images are stunningly vivid, sometimes over-bright in the manner of Avedon, whom Walker assisted. Many of his models wear facial expressions so flat and affect-free as to appear proxies for mannequins, suspended between worlds and struck hollow in the process. Like Avedon, Walker knows how to strip the human face of warmth to electrifying effect, and that tension between these macabre, morose faces and the comic elements in Walker’s visions gives the work its dynamism. This unresolved tension, always at the heart of Walker’s work, makes it perpetually thrilling. 170 color illus. (Adapted from Publishers weekly).

Syndetics book coverPhotographers / Michael Pritchard and Tony Nourmand.
“Photographers celebrates some of the men and women behind the camera. They range from press photographers and photojournalists from Life and Picture Post magazines to studio and fashion photographers such as Avedon and Bailey. Some of the greatest names from twentieth century photography are shown with their Leica, Nikon, Rolleiflex and Speed Graphic cameras taking pictures of film stars such as Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn and John Wayne and pop stars such as the Beatles – as well as self-portraits and pictures of their contemporaries”–Cover.(Syndetics summary)

Reflections on Photography in 100 ideas and 100 years

What better time than the new year to reflect back on the journey that photography as a medium has achieved in the last century, from experimental, messy beginnings to the sleek and high tech styles of today’s digital age. A choice of very interesting and gorgeous books will take you on this amazing journey, looking at the early techniques, seminal photographers, myriad genres and styles from black and white documentary to glossy colour fashion photography. We will finish with a couple of titles that will help you improve your own photography from exposure to digital storage. May these inspire, illuminate and guide you at the start of a creative new year.

syndetics-lc100 ideas that changed photography
This compelling book chronicles the most influential ideas that have shaped photography from the invention of the daguerreotype in the early 19th century up to the digital revolution and beyond. Entertaining and intelligent, it provides a fascinating resource to dip into. Arranged in a broadly chronological order to show the development of photography, the ideas that comprise the book include innovative concepts, cultural and social incidents, technologies, and movements. Each idea is presented through lively text and arresting visuals, and explores when the idea first evolved and its subsequent impact on photography.
From amazon.com

syndetics-lcAmerican Photographs
More than any other artist, Walker Evans invented the images of an essential America that we have long accepted as fact. American Photographs, first published by the Museum of Modern Art in 1938, is the purest and most complete expression of his cool, unblinking vision. The eighty-seven photographs reproduced on its pages are as relevant and essential as ever, with Lincoln Kirstein’s essay as their eloquent foil. American Photographs has been a key touchtone for photographers and those who seek to understand the lyric potential of the medium, but it has often been out of print. This 75th anniversary edition, with sumptuous duotone plates complementing the elegant restraint of the original typography and design, makes Evans’s landmark book available again. For the first time, digital technologies aid in emulating the precise cropping and finely tuned balance of the 1938 reproductions, capturing as never before the look and feel of the first edition. (dust  jacket)

syndetics-lcMaster Photographers
An expansive publication for larger than life photographers and their arresting photographs. The images jump at the viewer who cannot stay unmoved, whether by the beauty, horror, significance or sheer scale of the print. This book assembles a wide range of styles, subject matters and photographic periods. A mammoth of a book that is sure to make a similarly grand impression.

syndetics-lcComing into Fashion
A fittingly plush publication looking back a the history of the world famous Condé Nast fashion magazines (Vogue, Vanity Fair), this book offers informative texts and interviews, dotted with 200 images from the publisher’s archives, some never seen before , as well as actual pages from magazines. It features over eighty photographers, revealing their talent and vision, sometimes from a very early point in their career. The big names seem to all appear along the pages, such as Edward Steichen, David Bailey or Paolo Roversi,  up to today’s exciting new comers such as Michael Baumgarten or Sølve Sundsbø. This book was published to coincide with the exhibition ‘Coming into fashion : a century of photography at Condé Nast’ curated by Nathalie Herschdoj and organized by the Foundation for the Exhibition of Photography

syndetics-lcThousands of images, now what?
Digital photography has a way to induce “image creation overload”. The average amateur photographer can shoot between 5,000 and 50,000 images per year, a far cry from the days of analog photography when slides, negatives and prints could fit in shoe boxes under the bed. Another characteristic of the digital age is that our images are stored in computers and hard drives. We generally view them on screen, not in print. To add to this slippery situation, original images are often copied multiple times to suit different purposes such as uploading, posting, editing etc. No wonder most photography enthusiasts will find themselves tearing their hair out, trying to find a better way to manage an increasingly unruly and monstruous collection. This book is just what is needed to get on the way to a better, simpler, more efficient system to store, retrieve and use photographs, making sure that managing images doesn’t take over the creative side of photography.

syndetics-lcEnvisioning Family: a photographer’s guide to making meaningful portraits of the modern family
Another book that should be a favourite during this season of reunions with friends and family. Tamara Lackey, a professional lifestyle photographer, featured in numerous publications such as O Magazine, Men’s Journal and Parenting Magazine and showcased on TV shows such as The Martha Stewart Show, CNN’s Anderson and The Today Show shares her knowledge, techniques and wisdom to inspire and guide us in making successful family portraits indoors or outdoors thanks to a host of new ideas, contemporary images and clear texts.  For amateur and professional photographers alike.

syndetics-lcThe Weekend Photographer
Rewarding when done correctly, photography can also be frustrating when you don’t achieve the results you envisioned. Whether it is an issue of lighting, focus, white balance or photographer positioning, most mistakes can be easily identified, with a bit of help. The Weekend Photographer is a comprehensive guidebook to diagnose your problems and improve your overall technique, all within the time constraints of one weekend. Mainly focused on landscapes, whether urban or natural, this book will satisfy those who prefer to venture out by themselves and leave the family portraits to others.

Festive ideas for the accidental photographer

syndetics-lcNew Zealand – Craig Potton

As we enter the festive season, this book might be high on the list of most coveted gifts. A majestic display of what New Zealand’s nature has to offer and what we may want to discover or rediscover during the summer months. A beautiful coffee table contender by one of New Zealand’s most distinguished landscape photographers, famous for his moody, often dramatic images of the wild parts of New Zealand.

syndetics-lcRobert Doisneau – Paris Les Halles Market

Once coined the Belly of Paris by Emile Zola, for its crucial role in the social, economic and gastronomic fabric of the capital, the central market of Les Halles was painfully extracted from its historic central location in the 70’s and transferred to the outskirts of Paris, to become the largest wholesale food market in the world (Rungis). In its place, a large commercial centre was constructed, which became known for its controversial architecture and the doggy characters loitering in the pedestrian area.
In 1932, Robert Doisneau was a budding photographer in love with Paris and its people in their daily activities and Les Halles was a hive and treasure trove for such imagery.
This book is a celebration of the market, depicted with candour and passion over 40  years. Doisneau became a fierce supporter of the market and documented the demolition and subsequent transformation of “le trou des Halles” into its current state. On the eve of a new remodelling of this vibrant part of Paris, “Paris Les Halles Market” is a timely reminder of the history of the place, and a nostalgic window into a bygone world as described by the affectionate words of Doisneau himself. “Saint-Eustache, the “village church”, was itself a mixture of styles and aromas: incense-scented and Gothic on the inside, celery-scented on the outside. And all around, humanity massed in the glow of fairground lights, rich and poor alike, truck drivers and market porters, butchers and Dior customers, grocers and drunkards. Everyone was on familiar terms, and all around there floated a sense of great gaiety and good will, values that electronic computers cannot calculate.” (excerpt from book)

syndetics-lcLooking at Ansel Adams

As expected for such a photography legend, the library holds quite a few titles by and about this seminal artist.
This latest addition is a nice combination of text and photographs in equal parts, making “Looking at Ansel Adams” a very attractive illustrated concise biography. The book is divided into chapters following the chronology of his career and his major photographs such as ” Moonrise, Hernandez, New Mexico, 1941″  or “Trailer-Camp Children, Richmond, California, 1944”.  A succession of personal accounts from Adams himself, together with contributions from his closest artist friends, family letters, postcards and mementos combine into a rich canvas complemented by details of the making of some of the iconic photographs we are so familiar with.  The book starts with a list of the major “characters” at play in the man’s life and concludes with a useful chronology and a glossary of photographic terms.

syndetics-lcMario Testino – Private View

The name is synomym with fame & glamour, fashion and celebrity. For the past 30 years, Mario Testino has been consumed by a passion for the world of fashion photography and has reached the pinnacle of his career, although he would argue that he is only started  “My favourite words are possibilities, opportunities and curiosity. I think if you are curious you create opportunities, and then if you open the doors, you create possibilities. People close doors all the time.”
A workaholic, Testino never tires of travelling the world to create ever more challenging, exciting and vibrant tableaux and protraits.
Mario Testino Private Views” was published to celebrate his inaugural exhibition in China. Beautifully and cleverly designed, this book is divided into three separate sections: LARGER THAN LIFE,  which shows portraits and snapshots of celebrities; IN MY OWN FASHION, which features the world of luxury brands and fashion magazines; and finally, PORTRAITS OF THE ROYAL FAMILY, which unveils some surprisingly informal and personal snapshots of the British monarchy.
An excellent introduction by Jennifer Allen gives us added insight into Testino’s world and craft.
Incidentally, the Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts is currently hosting two exhibitions of Testino’s work: In your Face is a retrospective of his work and influence in fashion photography whereas British Royal Portraits is exclusively dedicated to the British Royal family.
For further insight on this major photographer, read the accompanying Guardian article , watch the New York Times video of an interview with Testino and borrow the DVD of “The September Issue” from our DVD collection. A fascinating account of the world of fashion.

International Garden Photographer of the Year (Kew Gardens)International Garden Photographer of the Year

There are as many ways of looking at gardens as there are eyes in the world and this book gives us a wonderful collection of ways of seeing all aspects of gardens, from details of plants, flowers, fruits, vegetables and even animals that inhabit those man made spaces, to sweeping landscapes in all seasons and every continent. Here is a lyrical portrait of our relationship with nature and our attempt at shaping and enhancing it.
The International Garden Photographer of the Year competition was established in 2008. This book showcases some of the best images produced in the last 5 years.

syndetics-lcsyndetics-lc20th Century Photography Museum Ludwig Cologne & The George Eastman House Collection – A History of Photography

Here are 2 new companion titles from the prolific and democratic Taschen house. They are both intent on presenting a history of photography based on two specific and important collections: the Museum Ludwig Cologne on one hand which holds 860 works by hundreds of some of the most famous 20th century photographers and the George Eastman House based in Rochester, New York, the first museum dedicated to photography in the United States founded in 1949 by George Eastman of the Eastman Kodak Company. Compact yet full of essential facts and quality reproductions, these will certainly become reliable sources for anyone interested in the history of photography.

syndetics-lcShooting in Sh*tty Light, The top ten worst photography lighting situations and how to conquer them

Summer, family reunions and weddings are looming and cameras in cupboards, on shelves and in custom designed bags all over the country are getting agitated in anticipation. This is the time when many of us will be catching up with friends and relatives, taking those yearly portraits, trying their hands at new equipment, lenses etc.
This book is a mine of information for every challenging situation where the light is too strong, too low or just plain wrong. Divided into 10 chapters covering 10 typical lighting problems, the author goes through the issue in simple terms, explaining and highlighting any useful jargon and illustrating the process, from analysing  the situation, taking an awful initial photo (as it would come out if you let your camera decide for you), to adjusting and finding the best solution possible. Very useful!

syndetics-lcGIMP for Absolute Beginners

GIMP is a powerful open source graphics application with most of the features of its proprietary counterpart, Photoshop. This book provides a general introduction to GIMP for beginners, but it also contains topics that general GIMP users will find beneficial. You’ll learn how to navigate the GIMP‘s modular interface, how to use the layering system and tools, and how to both modify photos and create original web art. You’ll also learn how to extend the GIMP with tools like the GIMP Animation Package. What you’ll learn Learn how to navigate the Gimp Interface Edit photos and retouch images Getting familiar with tool workarounds Customize and configure the GIMP Interface Increase your design prowess Have fun with more complex graphics projects Who this book is for Hobbyists, occasional designers, enthusiastic photographers, graphical design amateurs, and beginning illustrators. (Library catalogue)

War and peace: humanity as a stage

syndetics-lcWorld Press Photo 12
Every year since 1955 an international jury has convened under the auspices of the World Press Photo Foundation to choose the finest press photographs of the year.
Universally recognized as the definitive competition for photographic reporting, it has been described by Michael Rand — for many years Art Director of The Sunday Times Magazine — as ‘the international photographic contest’.

This exceptional book contains the most haunting and inspiring photographs from 2011 — more than 160 pictures submitted by photojournalists, picture agencies, newspapers and magazines throughout the world.
Selected from more than 101,000 images taken by over 5,200 photographers representing 124 countries, these prize-winning photos capture the most powerful, moving and sometimes disturbing events of 2011. (From Publisher)

syndetics-lcThe Sartorialist, Closer
Photography book or fashion book? Great street portraits of people with style.. In the Sartorialist: Closer, Scott Schuman gives us a new instalment on human style as diverse and unique as the cities he visits with his camera, capturing the essence of global styles the world over, from Seoul to London, New York to Tokyo. His blog designed to feature the people he captured on the street just because they looked great,  has become an international phenomenon and his work is now part of collections such as the Victoria & Albert Museum and the Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography and showcased in many different fashion magazines.

syndetics-lcPhotography, the Whole Story
A new history of photography presented in a compact yet exhaustive volume, this title is divied chronologically into 5 main periods from the experimental years in the early 1820’s to the very latest trends in global photography. Each chapter features a double spread timeline that serves as a visual table of content. Trends, genres and iconic photographers are described, discussed and attractively illustrated, focusing on specific details of featured photographs within their design, historical and cultural context. The Navigator, Focal Points and Photographer Profile make it a lively guided tour of the subject of photography through the ages.

syndetics-lcTheatre of War – Cecil Beaton
“At the beginning of the Second World War the Ministry of Information, through the advice of Kenneth Clark, commissioned Cecil Beaton to photograph the Home Front. Beaton set to work recording the destruction of the Wren churches in the City and the heroism of Londoners under attack. He conducted a survey of Bomber and Fighter Commands for the RAF, which was published with Beaton’s own astute commentary. Beaton was an effective propagandist, but his voice, like his photographs, was touchingly elegant. Whatever his subject, Beaton was always a stylist. Beaton’s wartime work for the Ministry amounted to seven thousand photographs, which are now housed with their negatives at the Imperial War Museums. They form a great document both of the landscape of war and of the passing of the Empire. He travelled through the Western Desert and on to Iraq, Palestine, Transjordan and Syria. In 1943 he left for India where he photographed the final days of the Raj in New Delhi and Calcutta before joining the Burma campaign. He ended the war deep in Chinese territory where he witnessed the Nationalist resistance to the Japanese. Beaton’s inherent sense of theatre extended from palatial drawing rooms to the jungle and the desert. Whatever the circumstances he never departed from his radical aesthetic. Theatre of War is published in conjunction with the Imperial War Museums on the occasion of a major exhibition”–publisher’s website.

syndetics-lcHenri Cartier-Bresson, A Biography
The 20th century was that of the image, and the legendary photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson, born in 1908, was the eye of the century. He focused on the fascination of Africa in the 1920s, the tragic fate of the Spanish Republicans, the Liberation of Paris, the weariness of Gandhi a few hours before his assassination, the victory of the Chinese communists, and much more besides. Cartier-Bresson was always on the spot, the great opportunist, seizing life’s historic events as they happened. An intensely private individual, Cartier-Bresson nonetheless took Pierre Assouline into his confidence over a number of years, discussing such subjects as his youthful devotion to surrealism, his lifelong passion for drawing, his experience of war and the prison camps, his friends and the women in his life. He even opened up his invaluable archives. This sensitive biography is the result of the meeting of two minds, revealed in much the same way and with the same truth as one of Cartier-Bresson’s outstanding, inimitable photographs. (from Amazon.co.uk)

syndetics-lcLife – A Journey through time
A remarkable photographic exploration of life on earth. In the year 2000, world-renowned wildlife photographer Frans Lanting set out on a personal journey to photograph the evolution of life on earth. He made pilgrimages to true time capsules like a remote lagoon in Western Australia, spent time in research collections photographing forms of microscopic life, and even found ways to create visual parallels between the growth of organs in the human body and the patterns seen on the surface of the earth. The resulting volume is a glorious picture book of planet Earth depicting the amazing biodiversity that surrounds us all. Lanting’s true gift lies beyond his technical mastery: it is his eye for geometry in the beautiful chaos of nature that allows him to show us the world as it has never been seen before. From crabs to jellyfish, diatoms to vast geological formations, jungles to flowers, monkeys to human embryos, LIFE is a testament to the magical beauty of life in all its forms and is one of Lanting’s most remarkable achievements. (Library catalogue)

syndetics-lcParis, Portrait of a city
The vivid history of the capital of love and photography. A city built on two millennia of history, Paris is entering the third century of its love story with photography. It was on the banks of the Seine that Niépce and Daguerre officially gave birth to this new art that has flourished ever since, developing a distinctive language and becoming a vital tool of knowledge. Paris, Portrait of a City leads us through what Goethe described as a “universal city where every step upon a bridge or a square recalls a great past, where a fragment of history is unrolled at the corner of every street”. The history of Paris is recounted in photographs ranging from Daguerre’s early incunabula to the most recent images – an almost complete record of over a century and a half of transformations and a vast panorama spanning more than 600 pages and 500 photographs. This book brings together the past and the present, the monumental and the everyday, objects and people. Images captured by the most illustrious photographers – Daguerre, Marville, Atget, Lartigue, Brassaï, Kertész, Ronis, Doisneau, Cartier-Bresson and many more – but also by many unknown photographers, attempt to bottle just a little of that “Parisian air”, something of that particular poetry given out by the stones and inhabitants of a constantly changing city that has inspired untold numbers of writers and artists over the ages. (Library catalogue)