Writings on Photography.
By Tod Papageorge.
Aperture, 2011. 208 pp., 3 color and 33 black & white illustrations, 6x8½".
Core Curriculum: Writings on Photography is the long-awaited collection of
essays, reviews and lectures by Tod Papageorge, one of the most influential
voices in photography today. As a photographer and the Walker Evans Professor
of Photography at the Yale University School of Art, Papageorge has shaped
the work and thought of generations of artist-photographers, and, through his
critical writings—some of which have gained a cult following through online
postings—he has earned a reputation as an unusually eloquent and illuminating
guide to the work of many of the most important figures in twentieth century
photography. Among the artists Papageorge discusses in this essential
volume are Eugène Atget, Brassaï, Robert Frank (with Walker Evans), Robert
Adams and his close friend Garry Winogrand. The book also includes texts that
examine the more general questions of photography’s relationship to poetry,
and how the evolution of the medium’s early technologies led to the twentieth century
creation of the artist-photographer. Among the previously unpublished
pieces in Core Curriculum are an unfinished poem written in response to Susan
Sontag’s On Photography, a profile of Josef Koudelka and a commencement
speech delivered at the Yale School of Art in 2004. Core Curriculum also
includes a number of interviews with this esteemed photographer/teacher/
author, ranging in topic from his own photographic work and background in
poetry to his energetic observations on the art of photography.