Monday, December 31, 2007

Books for Spring 2008

2007 is just about over and although it has been mostly a year of sadness and death (Endless war! Antonioni Dead! Mailer Dead! Vonnegut Dead! Charles Nelson Reilly Dead! Bush is still breathing!), the world of photography books is alive and flourishing. And now that we have the next 11 months of political campaigning to look forward to, we will need something to keep our high blood pressure in check. I suggest…since you won’t be able to make the mortgage payments anyway, spend all your earnings on art and photography books. That’s a safe investment.

So this is a look ahead to 2008 at some titles that are to be published that look interesting and may deserve further investigation. We know what they say about judging books by their covers so I hope my excitement isn’t taken to the mat on a great number of these but here goes...

In the department of reissues, 2008 will see several. One that is long since overdue is Aperture’s new edition of Robert Adams’ The New West. So if you missed out on the 1974 original or those Walther Konig editions from 2000, now is your chance. This is a must have, sight unseen. Aperture also picked up Paul Fusco’s RFK Funeral Train and has printed an expanded version with 30 more photos.

From the unstoppable Heidelbergs of Steidl, comes a new edition of Robert Frank’s Zero Mostel Reads a Book as well as a much needed 50th anniversary edition of The Americans. Also since they think outside the box, they are reprinting Andy Warhol’s 1968 classic catalog from the Moderna Museet in Stockholm.

Kruse Publisher is reissuing Karin Apollonia Muller’s sleeper on LA, Angels In Fall which made the cut and was included in Parr and Badger Volume 2. This book made somewhat of an impression on me but I hesitated in getting a copy and then it was gone (but not apparently for good).

The lastly I will mention MoMA’s updated edition of Nicholas Nixon’s The Brown Sisters with additional photos from the past seven years.

For books of original works, there are too many that look promising to mention them all - so I will stick to a few that are a little off the beaten path.

Lee Friedlander is breaking his short silence this year with a book of Fredrick Law Olmsted Landscapes from DAP.

The video and filmmaker Chantal Ackerman is the subject of a new book called Moving Through Time and Space from the Art Museum of the University of Houston.

Torst, the publisher of all photographers Czech, has two new books of my favorite one-armed photographer Josef Sudek with Portraits and The Window of My Studio.

Powershovel Books who gave you the reworking of Daido Moriyama’s Bye Bye Photography is continuing to keep Moriyama in our sightline with Kagero and Colors - another reworking of one of his early books spliced with color photographs.

What may be the most pleasant surprise this year is Aperture’s It’s Beautiful Here Isn’t It… a book of Luigi Ghirri’s color photographs (with an introduction by Bill Eggleston). Aperture is also handling a special edition set of Eric Kessels’ In Almost Every Picture (Volumes One to Five) signed and numbered and housed in a grey felt slipcase.

One of the better young photographers working today, Lisa Kereszi, is having her project on the New York burlesque scene published by Damiani in a book called Fantasies.

Editorial RM is publishing what looks to be the first serious treatment of Nacho Lopez, one of Mexico’s best street photographers, in a huge 500 page volume called Luna Cornea.

Olaf Otto Becker’s iceberg photos are being published by Hatje Cantz in what looks to be a handsome edition called Broken Line.

I am not sure what to expect from Anders Petersen’s City Diary from Steidl since his last two books have been complete duds but this is on my radar.

Thomas Demand’s huge installation Grotto that I had mentioned in my review of the Serpentine Gallery Catalog is the subject of an expensive but luxurious two volume set called Processo Grottesco from Progetto Prada Arte.

And last but certainly not least, Paul Shambroom of Meetings fame has a new book called Picturing Power from the University of Minnesota.

Well…this is my small look forward for Spring 2008. Yes…that is right; these are all for just the Spring season. There will be thousands of more trees pulped for Summer, Fall and Winter. So stay tuned.

Since I quit smoking last year and have the metabolism of a hummingbird, my resolution for the New Year is to keep 5B4 Photography and Books an interesting distraction and resource for all concerned.

One New Year’s wish from me is, if you haven’t used up all of your resolutions already, please consider: “For 2008, I will leave more comments on 5B4 because I have opinions of my own that I can no longer suppress.”

Cheers and Happy New Year. May it be filled with happiness and success and cheap first editions.

Whiskets and Jeff


Anonymous said...


You have shamed me into a comment. But it is a fact that amazes me, and a correction all in one.

You made a reference to the many, many books that steidl does every year and said "From the unstoppable Heidelbergs of Steidl"

It is all from just one 6 color Roland. I think it runs just about 24/7.

The best to you (and Gerhard) for the New Year.


sanzen said...

I'm a disgusting lurker since today, but now I'm a good intent for 2008 I promise I will post comments.
This photo books review deserves comments.
Apropos you will have an interesting discovery in the next Aperture monography dedicated to Luigi Ghirri, sadly passed away 15 years ago.
I'm a passionate of his works since many years, too much now.
Buon anno.

Anonymous said...


Thanks for the correction. To write "From the unstoppable Roland" doesn't have the same lyrical ring to it does it?

Happy New Year

Anonymous said...

Hi Jeff. Of those sets, I am really looking forward to the Robert Adams (I have been longing for "The New West" for many years, so it's brilliant news that it will be republished) and the Luigi Ghirri.

Do you know what happened with plans for the new edition of "American Photographs". A while back you wrote the MoMA would publish it at some point during 2007...

Congratulations for the excellent blog. I am happy to hear you intend to keep it up! Feliz año nuevo!

Anonymous said...


The new edition of American Photographs is due this year as it is for the 70th anniversary and I hope it is sooner than later.

Anonymous said...

Really looking forward to Larry Towell's photographs from his farm in Canada "World from my front porch" and of course my new book (PLUG!) "Dog Food and Oysters". Will send you a copy when its done (some time this year). Keep up the great work! BUT ESPECIALLY looking forward to YOUR BOOK! Come on mate! Put one together!

Anonymous said...

I will second the "looking forward" for the Adams book, great news for those of us not lucky enough to find one mis-marked in some used bookstore.

And one general comment: I wonder how much work it would be at this point to create an archive listing by photographer/artist. You've been so prolific and show no signs of slowing down, so the longer you continue, the harder it will be for us to remember who you've reviewed and who you haven't.

For all of us I think, we can only hope 2008 is as prosperous for 5B4 as 2007 has been.

Happy New Year.

Matt Weber said...

Last cigarette: new years eve 1984
Don't start again!

I agree with you that the Heidelbergs of Steidl
sounds a lot better. I think I may buy Steidl's
reprint of "Poste Restante" this year.

You tempt me with all your reviews,
but for the time being I've got to try
and save a little bit...

Anonymous said...


I have some things up my sleeve for 2008. Looking forward to the new book. Congrats.


I am going to try to make 5B4 Blogger independent this year by setting it up as a regular site so I can make it as good as I want. I will look into an archive like what you mention. By the way, you can use the search box in the upper left corner in the meanwhile to look for things.

Thanks for reading.


No more smoking and actually I should cut down on the books too.

Anonymous said...

thanks for replying. Yes, I know I can use the search, but it's not a great way to find reviews of books I'm looking for. For example, if I search "Friedlander", I have to scroll through quite a few posts before I get to the last one, the only actual Friedlander book you've reviewed (Cherry Blossoms). It just seems like it would be a good resource to have a "review index by artist" feature.

Since I have you, I should also add that your RSS feed is messed up: if I click on an article, I get that article's comments page only, with no way to get to the actual article.

Going independent is the way to go. I'm partial to WordPress but there are lots of choices out there.

sanzen said...

For those impatient to know the Luigi Ghirri works the best introduction to his seminal work is:
Luigi Ghirri
Federico Motta Editore
384 pages; 540 photos
26x29 centimetres
Price Euro 75,00
It was published as catalogue of a wonderful exhibition about the whole Opera of Luigi Ghirri in Reggio Emilia in 2001
You can find this book in the Federico Motta website
For others titles to complete your survey of my beloved photographer
here the link
then you will appreciate more the William Eggleston wssay :-)))))

Anonymous said...

Most looking forward to the books I know nothing about, the surprises.

My resolution: to visit this blog regularly so not to have read 10 articles at once...yes an archive organized by the photographer/books reviewed would be great. For those that are knew to this fantastic resource it is somewhat agonizing going through the current archive... but that is a detail...

Have a great New Year!

Anonymous said...

by the way your links to 2007 seem broken. I keep getting back to 2008.

ah, computers...