Henri Cartier-Bresson: the modern century

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Museum of Modern Art, Apr 30, 2010 - Photography - 376 pages
4 Reviews
Henri Cartier-Bresson (1908-2004) is one of the most influential and beloved figures in the history of photography. His inventive work of the early 1930s helped define the creative potential of modern photography. Following World War II, he helped found the Magnum photo agency, which enabled photojournalists to reach a broad audience through magazines such as "Life" while retaining control over their work. Cartier-Bresson would go on to produce major bodies of photographic reportage, capturing such events as China during the revolution, the Soviet Union after Stalin's death, the United States in the postwar boom and Europe as its older cultures confronted modern realities. Published to accompany an exhibition at The Museum of Modern Art, this is the first major publication to make full use of the extensive holdings of the Fondation Cartier-Bresson-including thousands of prints and a vast resource of documents relating to the photographer's life and work. The heart of the book surveys Cartier-Bresson's career through 300 photographs divided into 12 chapters. While many of his most famous pictures are included, a great number of images will be unfamiliar even to specialists. A wide-ranging essay by Peter Galassi, Chief Curator of Photography at the Museum, offers an entirely new understanding of Cartier-Bresson's extraordinary career and its overlapping contexts of journalism and art. The extensive supporting material-featuring detailed chronologies of the photographer's professional travels and of spreads of his picture stories as they appeared in magazines-will revolutionize the study of Cartier-Bresson's work.

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Given that he was a pioneer in the field, it is still remarkable that he captured so many unique & poignant moments covering so many subjects.

Review: Henri Cartier-Bresson: The Modern Century

User Review  - JDAZDesigns - Goodreads

I don't know. Maybe I'm not familiar with his work. I just didn't have an "Oh wow" moment with any of these pictures. I guess that means I have to go to the back of the class. Read full review

Contents

PREFACE AND ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
7
Peter Galassi
71
POINTS OF REFERENCE
289
Copyright

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About the author (2010)

Henri Cartier-Bresson was born in France in 1908. He studied painting and then began to photograph in the early 1930s. After escaping from prison camp in 1943, he made portraits of artists, covered the liberation of Paris and filmed a documentary on the return of war prisoners. In 1947, the year he had his first show at MoMA, he also founded Magnum Photos with Robert Capa, George Rodger and David Seymour. Not long after, he began in earnest the life of a traveling photographer, working in India, Burma, Pakistan, Indonesia, China, Japan, Mexico and Cuba. His first, defining book "The Decisive Moment" was published by Teriade in 1952. By the late 60s, he had almost ceased making reportage to re-embrace his first passion, drawing. Cartier-Bresson created his Foundation in Paris in 2003, and passed away in 2004.

Peter Galassi is Chief Curator in the Department of Photography at The Museum of Modern Art.