Alfred Stieglitz: Photographer
By Doris Bry
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston in association with Bulfinch Press/Little, Brown & Co.
Where THe MASKS STILL DANCE: NEW GUINEA
By Chris Rainier
Brown & Co.
132 pp., $60
CHIM: THE PHOTOGRAPHS OF DAVID SEYMOUR
Brown & Co.
192 pp, $50
YUL BRYNNER: PHOTOGRAPHER
By Victoria Brynner
Harry N. Arbams Inc.
210 pp., $39.95
What makes photographers cross the threshold from being merely good to great? The answer lies in the ability to express a unique vision with not only technical perfection but, more important, with feeling. Their photos not only catch your eye but your heart, too. The following four books are major retrospectives of individual artists showcasing some of their finest work.
Derived from the collection at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Alfred Stieglitz: Photographer traces the development of the artist's vision over his lifetime. This handsome book includes some of Stieglitz's strongest images. The chronological format follows Stieglitz's growth as a photographer from his early pictorial images to his more visionary later images.
The portraits of his wife, Georgia O'Keefe, and the "Equivalents" series pack the strongest emotional punch.
Where Masks Still Dance: New Guinea is a moving exploration of the indigenous cultures of New Guinea. Chris Rainier's strong black-and-white images powerfully convey the dignity and beauty of these little-known people and their culture. A profound respect for their way of life emanates from his excellent work. Nicely packaged with the photographs is his commentary on what led him to New Guinea, his experience there, and the lessons he learned.
Chim: The Photographs of David Seymour sets forth a visual panorama of the 20th century. Set against the backdrop of a turbulent Europe, his black-and-white photographs give a human face to the powerful political events that have shaped the 20th century. His portrayals of children in the aftermath of World War II are a testament to the power of innocence.
Most people don't associate the famed actor, Yul Brynner, with photography. Yul Brynner: Photographer, compiled by his daughter, tries to change that. It's an intriguing behind-the-scenes glimpse, by a talented insider, of the movie industry. The casual shots of co-stars and the sets make for interesting viewing throughout. Unfortunately, too many portraits of him distract attention from the photographs by him.