(Anonymous) Mao Tsetung: A Selection of Photographs. Edited by ther Editorial Department of Chinese Photography. Foreword by an anonymous author. The People's Fine Arts Publishing House Foreign Language Press, 1978. 216 pp. Folio. Red cloth with gilt title and spine. Original card slipcase (not shown; very scarce!) 200 color reproductions. Acetate protector (possibly original).
"While Hitler had his own personal photographer in Heinrich Hoffmann, Mao Zedong had Xu Xiaobing and his wife, Hou Bo, who took the photographs in this book. She was Mao's official portrait photographer form 1950 until 1962, when she aroused the ire of the Chairman's fearsome wife, Jiang Jing, and was sent to a labour camp on the orders of this future member of the Gang of Four.
Hou Bo was never credited as the author of these official portraits, nor received copyright. Thus, unlike Hoffmann, she did not become rich as a result of the fact that her photographs were published in their hundreds of millions, distributed and shown everywhere--especially during the Cultural Revolution--carried around by the Red Guards and prominently displayed in every Chinese Home.
Like Hitler, and political leaders everywhere, Mao insisted on acting out his favorite roles for the camera-among them Mao the Prophet, Mao the Educator and Mao the Strategist. This was symptomatic of the almost unprecedented cult of personality that surrounded the Chinese leader, who seemed to have a creepy resistance to the normal signs of aging...
Looking at some of the superb, iconic images in this fascinating book, which was published in many languages, it seems incredible that the official reason for Bo's fall from grace was that allegation that she had never taken a good photograph of the Chairman."--Parr & Badger
Near Fine; boards splayed (curved outward); faint ring on front board (visible in raking light); very slight wear and 'pushing' at corners; acetate rubbed.