The Photographer's Eye

Front Cover
Museum of Modern Art, 2007 - Photography - 155 pages
14 Reviews
This book is an investigation of what photographs look like, and of why they look that way. It is concerned with photographic style and with photographic tradition: with the sense of possibilities that a photographer today takes to his work. The invention of photography provided a radically new picture-making process- a process based not on synthesis but on selection. The difference was a basic one. Paintings were 'made' - constructed from a storehouse of traditional schemes, skills, and attitudes- but photographs, were 'taken'. The difference raised a creative issue of a new order: how could this mechanical and mindless process be made to produce pictures meaningful in human terms- pictures with clarity and coherence and a point of view? It was soon demonstrated that an answer would not be found by those who loved too much the old forms, for in large part the photographer was bereft of the old artistic traditions. The pictures reproduced in this book were made over almost a century and a quarter. They were made for various reasons, by men of different concerns and varying talent. They have in fact little in common except their success, and a shared vocabulary: these pictures are unmistakably photographs. The vision they share belongs to no school or aesthetic theory, but to photography itself. The character of this vision was discovered by photographers at work, as their awareness of photography's potentials grew. -- from Introduction

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Review: The Photographer's Eye

User Review  - Holden Richards - Goodreads

Beautiful bit of writing at the beginning of this. A well curated exhibition. Read full review

Review: The Photographer's Eye

User Review  - Barb Swanner - Goodreads

If you are just starting out, or have lost your way taking photographs this is a book that you should read and absorb. Read full review

Contents

Introduction
6
The Thing Itself
12
Vantage Point
126

About the author (2007)

John Szarkowski, is Director Emeritus of the Department of Photography, The Museum of Modern Art, New York. His book of photographs of the buildings of Louis Sullivan was recently reissued by Bulfinch Press. Szarkowski lives in East Chatham, NY, & New York City.

Bibliographic information