The Photobook: A History.
By Martin Parr and Gerry Badger.
Phaidon, London, 2006. 320 pp., 750 color illustrations, 10x11½".
Following on from the success of the first volume, The Photobook: A History volume II brings the story of the Photobook fully up to date. It features publications by many well-known photographers ranging from Man Ray, Ed Ruscha and Andy Warhol to Christian Boltanski, Stephen Shore and Sophie Calle by way of Bernd and Hilla Becher, Andreas Gursky and Lewis Baltz. Several innovative books by unknown photographers are also included, offering an opportunity to discover these overlooked works.
Photographers have been making photobooks – bound collections of their work – ever since the birth of photography in the early nineteenth century. While for some photographers the single print is considered the ultimate expression of their work, for many others the photobook is the most important vehicle for the widespread communication of their vision.
This second volume includes over 200 publications carefully selected by the renowned contemporary photographer, Martin Parr, whose passion for the photobook has made him a world authority on the subject, and the critic and curator Gerry Badger. All the books are accompanied by extensive commentaries by Badger and are illustrated as three-dimensional objects, providing a true sense of them as art works in their own right.
From Édouard-Denis Baldus’s magnificent volume for the Paris-Lyon-Méditerranée Railway Company of 1861 to Geert van Kesteren’s hard-hitting indictment of the war in Iraq, Why Mister, Why? of 2004, the authors have chosen what they believe to be the most artistically and culturally important photobooks ever made to create this comprehensive and visually exciting history of the medium.
The following chapters appear in this volume:
1 Explosion - The American Photobook since the 1980s
2 Common Market - The European Photobooks since the 1980s
3 Without Frontiers - The Worldwide Photobook
4 Appropriating the Photograph - The Artist's Photobook
5 Point of Sale - The Company Book
6 Looking at Photographs - The Picture Editor as Auteur
7 The Camera as Witness - The 'Concerned' Photobook since World War II
8 Straight no Chaser - The New 'New Objectivity'
9 Home and Away - The Photobook and Modern Life
Epilogue - The Ultimate Photoboook