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Afanador, Ruven (Photographer) & Gaultier, Jean-Paul (Contributor). RUVEN AFANADOR: SOMBRA ("RUVEN AFANADOR: SHADOW") . London, England: Merrell Publishers Limited, 2004. Hardcover. First Edition/First Printing. Unpaginated. Fine/Fine.

The photographer's second collection of male nudes. Now considered a contemporary erotic photography classic. The first and only edition. The book is now very scarce. A brilliant production by Ruven Afanador and Monika Sziladi: Oversize-volume format. A very tall and thick book. Black cloth boards with metallic-silver titles embossed on spine, as issued. Photographs and Afterword by Ruven Afanador. The book is lovingly dedicated to Enrique Afanador Perez, the photographer's father, and to an unnamed, clearly male "muse, for his eternal beauty". Foreword by Jean-Paul Gaultier, one of the finest living fashion designers. Acknowledgments appended at the end. Printed on thick coated stock paper in Italy to the very highest standards. In pictorial DJ with white titles on the cover and spine, as issued. Presents the photographer's most stunning, most innovative, and most lyrical collection of male nudes. Almost all of the photographs are full-frontal nudes in balletic poses interspersed with lovely still lifes. If "Torero", Afanador's breakthrough debut, celebrates Spanish and Hispanic machismo, "Sombra" is inspired by and celebrates the male dancer. "Sombra" literally means "shadow", but it is also the Spanish word for being photographed, as in "have your sombra (picture) taken". The rich tones and compositions hark back to the first Golden Age of photography: Nadar, daguerreotypes, Baron Wilhelm von Gloeden, Man Ray's solarization experiments, and vintage photographs of Nijinsky and the Ballets Russes. "Through the chiaroscuro of tones and tints, Ruven Afanador creates a bewitching play of shadow and light. Confirms his reputation as a master of elegant, timeless, and profoundly sensual work" (Publisher's blurb). The Colombian-born Ruven Afanador is a staff photographer at The New Yorker Magazine, along with Mary Ellen Mark, Robert Polidori, Gilles Peress, and Martin Schoeller, a high leap that would have made Baryshnikov proud. A meltingly beautiful performance of a book, this is a "must-have" title for Ruven Afanador collectors. This copy is very boldly and beautifully signed in maroon fountain pen by Ruven Afanador. His signature is flamboyant, elaborate, one-of-a-kind. This is the only signed copy available online and is in especially fine condition: Clean, crisp, and bright, a pristine beauty. A rare signed copy thus. One of the most brilliant living photographers. A fine collectible copy. (SEE ALSO OTHER RUVEN AFANADOR TITLE IN OUR CATALOG). ISBN 1858942497. $400.00

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