Praha Panoramaticka. Josef Sudek. Statni Nakladatelstvi, Praha, 1959. First edition. Oblong quarto. Cloth in photo-illustrated dustjacket. Preliminaries + poem by Jaroslav Seifert + 284 gravure panoramas of Prague and vicinity.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Though this is the rare Czech first edition, the dust jacket is from the second, French, edition.
This magnificent book alone would have secured a place for Sudek as a master among twentieth century photographers. Using the panoramic format, he was able to suggest the visual sweep of both city and landscape views. Taken in all seasons and from many awesome vantage points, Sudek chronicled his city with its splendid mix of architectural styles, views of its winding Vltava River, and Bohemian countryside. Most of the panoramas are horizontal, but the collection includes a number of effective vertical images. Single-minded and energetic in his pursuit of these images, Sudek used a modified 1899 panoramic camera that took individual sheets of film. He worked expertly with only his left arm, having lost his right arm during his military service. This book is testament to the fact that Sudek successfully evaded the will of the Communist occupiers who tried to squash individual expression.
Book is in Fine condition with some soiling to boards; bottom page edges lightly soiled as well; dust jacket is edge worn and somewhat rubbed but otherwise Fine