Photographs by William Eggleston. Text by Walter Hopps and Thomas Weski.
224 pp., 97 color illustrations, 11¾x11".
Although thought to be out-of-print, copies of this Scalo book have been released. Note this is not the first edition.
First of all, this is not a book of photographs taken in Los Alamos, New Mexico (home of the infamous National Laboratory which developed the atomic bomb). With no identifying captions or titles, it's virtually impossible to know where these images were made. Eggleston himself, however, chose the title Los Alamos for a massive body of work made between the years 1966 and 1974; he did visit the town in 1973, and presumably a few of these images were made there. Eggleston's then-radical image-making philosophy is stated succinctly by the artist as follows: "I had this notion of what I called a democratic way of looking around, that nothing was more or less important." Eggleston was extraordinarily attentive to ordinary life, regardless of whether or not his unwillingness to assign importance to objects (and ideas) or impose theoretical structure on one's surroundings is "democratic". His statement, "All days are similar, no matter what part of this planet we're in," dives to the depth of his decades-long project, to record life and all of its richness, irrespective of location. This gives the work the feel of visual archaeology, a catalogue of fragments. The puzzle pieces are here; their arrangement and meaning is left entirely up to us.
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