Reiner Leist American Portraits 1910-2001 (Photography) (英語) ハードカバー – 2001/10
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Over a period of seven years Leist traveled across America, photographing people from Rochester to Key West and from New York City to Los Angeles. Before making a portrait the photographer asked each person to provide him with a childhood photograph. This childhood image often supplied the initial visual framework for Leist s portrait. The essays, which accompany each pair of portraits, reveal the subjects, own views on their life, and what it means to be an American. Like America itself, the book presents a diverse tableau of race and background, youth and experience, native born and immigrant, capturing the complex mix of America s contemporary society. An extraordinary encounter with recent American experience. . Alan Trachtenberg
Reiner Leist lives in New York and teaches photography at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, Mass. His previous books are South Africa: Blue Portraits and Window.
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Reiner Leist has photographed this cross-section of Americans with so much empathy and sensitivity that the souls of the participants come directly across to the reader. I have never encountered a photographer, especially a portraitist, with such empathy for his sitters. The format of the book, which pairs a childhood photograph selected by a participant with a corresponding adult portrait taken by Reiner Leist is unique. The juxtaposition of the two photographs has the powerful effect of conveying a sense of identity across boundaries of time and geography.
I can't recommend this book highly enough and have bought it for everyone on my holiday gift list! The book itself is beautifully made. One comes away from each viewing/reading of it with a heightened sensitivity to one's own (im)mortality, the passage of time and the presence of place.