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Witkin, Joel-Peter (Artist/Photographer) & Van Deren, Coke (Contributor). JOEL-PETER WITKIN FORTY PHOTOGRAPHS: THE SAN FRANCISCO MUSEUM OF MODERN ART EXHIBITION. San Francisco, CA: San Francisco Museum Of Modern Art, 1985. Softcover. First Edition/First Printing. 50 pages. Fine.

Exhibition catalog. Published in an extremely small and limited print run as a softcover original only. The first and only edition, the book is now rare. A brilliant production by Joel-Peter Witkin and Suzanne Anderson-Carey: Oversize-volume format. Pictorial softcovers with black titles on the cover and spine, as issued. Photographs by Joel-Peter Witkin. Essay by Coke Van Deren, one of the finest pieces ever written on Witkin. Printed on thick coated stock paper in the United States to the highest standards. Without DJ, as issued. Published on the occasion of the landmark exhibition of the same name held at the San Francisco Museum of Contemporary Art from December 6, 1985 through February 9, 1986. Presents some of the earliest, finest, and most representative photographs by Joel-Peter Witkin, one-of-a-kind works that express the artist's unique vision. Witkin's powerful and transgressive images are renowned for their depiction of outsiders, including dwarfs, transsexuals, hermaphrodites, and other physically deformed people. They are equally appreciated for their aesthetic refinement, especially their allusions to Classical Painting, Baroque Art, Surrealism, still lifes, and religious iconography. The collection includes such rarely seen masterpieces as "Hermes", "Angel of the Carrots" (a real subject born with a woman's breasts and two penises), and "Woman Breastfeeding An Eel", one of Witkin's most disturbingly beautiful images. Not for the squeamish, the vertiginous line between Arbus-ian voyeurism and Blakean mysticism that his work treads makes Witkin's work among the best ever taken by an American artist/photographer. It is very faraway, to be sure, from someone like Garry Winogrand, but it is also tragically grand because it is rooted in and captures human pain. One of the best early retrospectives on his oeuvre, this is a "must-have" title for Joel-Peter Witkin collectors. This title sold out upon publication and is now highly collectible. This is one of very few copies still available online and is in especially fine condition: Clean, crisp, and bright, a beauty. Most copies available online have major flaws. A rare copy thus. 25 plates supplemented with visual materials. One of the greatest living American artist/photographers. A fine copy. (SEE ALSO OTHER JOEL-PETER WITKIN TITLES IN OUR CATALOG). ISBN 0918471052. $80.00

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