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Walker Evans: Lyric Documentary [Hardcover]

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Item description for Walker Evans: Lyric Documentary by Walker Evans, John T. Hill & Heinz Liesbrock...

Walker Evans's career spread over 46 fitful and prolific years, yet in a scant two, 1935-1936, he produced the singular body of work that came to define him. During that brief time, while working for the Farm Security Administration (previously the U.S. Resettlement Administration) photographing the consequences of the Great Depression, he refined a hybrid style that combined documentation with sly personal comment. He delighted in traveling incognito as an artless photojournalist, but with the independence to satisfy his own artistic designs. Walker Evans: Lyric Documentary presents these seminal images for the first time as a comprehensive, cohesive body of work, in chronological order. These are prime examples of Evans's alchemy, his seemingly effortless transformation of mundane fact into sweeping lyricism. They not only define his mature style, but also offer a path for artists of future generations. Evans has been called the most important American artist of his century, and the impact of his vision reaches well beyond the province of photography. With texts by John T. Hill, Heinz Liesbrock and Allan Trachtenberg.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   236
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 1" Width: 9.75" Height: 9"
Weight:   3.15 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Nov 15, 2006
Publisher   Steidl
ISBN  3865210228  
ISBN13  9783865210227  

Availability  0 units.

More About Walker Evans, John T. Hill & Heinz Liesbrock

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Walker Evans was born in 1903 and died in 1975.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Arts & Photography > Artists, A-Z > ( D-F ) > Evans, Walker
2Books > Subjects > Arts & Photography > Photography > Collections, Catalogues & Exhibitions
3Books > Subjects > Arts & Photography > Photography > General
4Books > Subjects > Arts & Photography > Photography > Photo Essays
5Books > Subjects > Arts & Photography > Photography > Photographers, A-Z > General

Reviews - What do customers think about Walker Evans: Lyric Documentary?

An Essential Walker Evans Book  Jul 5, 2007
At once a splendid coffee table book and an impressive work of original scholarship, "Walker Evans: Lyric Documentary," by John T. Hill, has much to please nearly everyone. The duotone black and white reproductions are sumptuous, among the finest I have seen. They illustrate Evans' seminal production during the years 1935-36, photographing for the US Government's Farm Security Administration during the Great Depression. Their selection, presented in chronological order, is a fine mix of the familiar - many of Evans' greatest images - with lesser known works and variants. Of particular interest to me is a plate comprised of two consecutive exposures that the author has joined together into a powerful panorama (pp. 158-59), a risky move that he manages in bravura fashion.

John T. Hill has written, co-written, or edited, to my count, at least nine books and catalogs on Walker Evans, including "Walker Evans First and Last," "Walker Evans At Work," "Walker Evans The Hungry Eye," "Walker Evans Simple Secrets," and "Walker Evans: Havana 1933." As Evans' friend and colleague for ten years at Yale University, and then as executor of Evans' estate for twenty years, John Hill is uniquely qualified to discuss the photographer and his work. And as a printer of Evans' photographs for nearly forty years, Mr. Hill possesses a thorough understanding of this photographer's oeuvre and intentions.

John Hill's two essays - one on an unpublished lecture Evans gave at Yale, illustrating what the photographer called his "aesthetic autobiography," and the other a short history of Evans' book publications within the context of their times - are important additions to Evans scholarship. Additionally, Alan Trachtenberg has provided an illustrated essay comparing the image selection and sequencing of the two major editions (1941 and 1960) of Evans' and James Agee's "Let Us Now Praise Famous Men."

Of the countless books and articles that have been written about Evans in the thirty-plus years since his death, "Walker Evans: Lyric Documentary" is among the best. It is one of a few that I would classify as an essential Walker Evans book.

Rodger Kingston
Kingston is the author of "Walker Evans In Print: An Illustrated Bibliography."
"Walker Evans: Lyric Documentary" by John T. Hill  May 25, 2007
Walker Evans' famous gift as a photographer is said to be his ability to erase himself as the creator of the images he captured, but he was there, of course, and made the necessary artistic judgments that distinguish his work. John T. Hill's masterful book, "Walker Evans: Lyric Documentary" is, in every way, an apt tribute to Evans' artistry.

Giving us a comprehensive presentation of the best work from Evans' most creative period is valuable enough. Yet Hill has provided something equally wonderful and useful, by illustrating what Evans called his "aesthetic autobiography." Using an unpublished lecture at Yale, in which Evans identified works of art, architecture and science he viewed as inspirations for his work, Hill furnishes compelling examples from these artists as visual annotations to Evans' work.

The result is exactly what one would hope for--not a laborious reinterpretation or egotistical "appreciation" of these great photographs, but a vivid presentation of the images themselves in a fashion that invites interest in the background material as an additional reward for the viewer. "Walker Evans: Lyric Documentary" is John T. Hill's fifth book on Evans and provides new insights into the work of the legendary photographer, considered by many to be the greatest artist of our time. This book is a great achievement by Hill, although fittingly, the reader will scarcely notice the skilled editorial hand shaping and ordering these powerful photographs that need little adornment.

Randall Roden
A uniquely fresh look at the photographs of Walker Evans  Mar 14, 2007
This is the only book I know of that contains Evans' own account of his aesthetic genesis with illustrations of his visual sources. Excellent essay by John T. Hill, who was a colleague of Evans at Yale University. Particularly noteworthy are the very finely reproduced plates of the seminal work of Evans during the years 1935-36. These are easily the best reproductions of Evans photographs that I've seen. A scholarly work and an important research tool.

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