Acquainted with the Night

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Lynn Saville, Philip Fried
Random House Incorporated, 1997 - Poetry - 160 pages
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The mysterious, seductive essence of the night has long entranced the imagination of artists and writers, and now it is the focus of a unique book that pairs evocative black-and-white photography with classic and contemporary poetry. Lynn Saville's photographs, shot after dark in and around New York and at other urban and rural sites in the United States, Portugal, Greece, and India, reveal unusual aspects of familiar cities and monuments as well as the dusky allure of fringe areas such as Manhattan's industrial district and desolate waterfronts. Rich with light and shadow, the photographs suggest the suspenseful, provocative quality of film noir.

Accompanying the photographs are 35 poems and poetic excerpts about the night, beginning with Robert Frost's "Acquainted with the Night," which inspired the book's title and mood. Selected here are works by Walt Whitman, Langston Hughes, Charles Simic, and Octavio Paz, among other award-winning poets, and citations from ancient verse such as the Rig Veda and The Epic of Gilgamesh. This volume speaks with contemplative beauty to those who love photography and poetry, and especially to all denizens of the night.

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About the author (1997)

Lynn Saville is a New York-based photographer who has exhibited and taught internationally. Her work is in major collections at the Brooklyn Museum, the Milwaukee Art Museum, and the California Museum of Photography, and her awards include a New York Foundation for the Arts fellowship.

Philip Fried is the author of two books of poetry, Mutual Trespasses (Ion Books, 1988) and Quantum Genesis (Zohar Press, 1997). He is the founding editor of the poetry journal The Manhattan Review and lives in New York with his wife, Lynn Saville.

Bill Moyers is a distinguished broadcast journalist and author. He was selected to the Television Hall of Fame in 1995 and has received numerous awards and honors, including more than 30 Emmy awards for excellence. His most recent book, The Language of Life, examines the lives of several poets.

Joseph Rosa is chief curator at the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C., and curated an exhibition of Lynn Saville's photographs at Columbia University in 1995. He is the author of A Constructed View: The Architectural Photography of Julius Shulman (Rizzoli, 1994) and Albert Frey, Architect (Rizzoli, 1990).

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