Photographs by Gay Block. Text by Anne Wilkes Tucker.
Radius Books, 2011. 160 pp., 100 color illustrations, 11x13".
Signed copies available to order!
Gay Block (born 1942) began photographing her
own affluent Jewish community in Houston in
1973. She expanded this study to include Jewish
senior citizens in south Miami Beach, focusing
with affection on the “bubbies” or grandmothers
that (she attests) she wished she herself had
as a child. Later, Block’s landmark work, Rescuers:
Portraits of Moral Courage in the Holocaust, made
in collaboration with writer Malka Drucker,
explored the lives of non-Jewish Europeans who
risked their lives to hide Jews from the Nazis. This
series was exhibited at The Museum of Modern
Art in 1992, and has been exhibited internationally.
In 2003, Block’s 30-year series of photo-, video and
written portraits of her mother, Bertha Alyce:
Mother exPosed, was published to great acclaim
and was cited as one of “Twelve Great Books
Published During the Year 2003” by The Review of
Arts, Literature, Politics and the Humanities. Here,
for the first time, About Love surveys more than
30 years of Block’s intimate and moving portraits.
She explains the title thus: Through photography,
I have learned about love. I hadn’t learned
about it at home or in school… I couldn’t have
learned about love without photography, and
I’m still learning.” Organized chronologically, and
published in an oversize format that is designed
to evoke the idea of a family album, the book
offers a thorough overview of the artist’s
approach to portraiture.
Read Faye Robson’s review of About Love in photo-eye Magazine.