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Scheunemann, Diana (Photographer) & Rankin, Tom (Contributor). DIANA SCHEUNEMANN: PHOTOGRAPHS. Bologna, Italy: Grafiche Damiani, 2005. Hardcover. First Edition/First Printing. 200 pages. Fine.

Retrospective collection of color photographs. One of the most influential erotic art photography books of our time. The First Hardcover Edition. Precedes and should not be confused with all other subsequent editions. Published in a regular first print run as hardcover original in several languages, this is the English-language Edition. The book is now scarce. A brilliant production by Diana Scheunemann: Oversize-size volume format. Pictorial hard boards with gilt titles embossed on the cover and spine, as issued. Photographs by Diana Scheunemann. Brief Introduction by Tom Rankin. Printed on thick glossy stock paper in Bologna, Italy to the highest standards. Without DJ, as issued. Presents what remains the single best book on Diana Scheunemann's influential work. Her sexually explicit photographs of individuals and couples add a stylish European inflection to the gritty work of her predecessors in Nobuyoshi Araki, Larry Clark, and Nan Goldin. Her achievement is not to push the boundaries of what can be shown in photographs about sex, a la Mapplethorpe. On the contrary, it is to show that sex has become, at least for the urban youth generation of the first decade of our century, the basis of a casual yet genuine lifestyle, something one does that helps define what one is, what has since come to be called "metrosexual". Scheunemann prefers the word "ambisexual", which she used as the title of her ground-breaking debut collection. The words mean the same thing, sex-as-style. Thus, her subsequent work for fashion and lifestyle magazines is something neither Araki nor Larry Clark can do because it is antithetical to their work whereas it is entirely compatible with Scheunemann's. The sex is real, but its intention is to strike a pose (to borrow Madonna's "Vogue" lyric) rather than to arouse. Was all this made possible by the fact that Diana is (empathetic) female rather than (aggressive) male? Her publisher, who has produced a lavish volume, thinks so: "Codes for responding to exposures as complex as these don't exist in a visual culture flooded by male-conceived fabrications of sexuality, and it is partly through the resulting interpretive dissonance that Scheunemann's images acquire their strength" (Publisher's blurb). As it can only be said by an unapologetically European intellectual/aesthete/cosmopolitan stylist. A "must-have" title for Diana Scheunemann and erotic art photography collectors. This is an Import title, was not widely distributed in the United States, and is now collectible. This is one of very few copies of the First Hardcover Edition/First Printing still available online and is in especially fine condition: Clean, crisp, and bright, a pristine beauty. A very scarce copy thus. Lavishly illustrated with color plates. One of the most brilliant living photographers. A fine copy. (SEE ALSO NAN GOLDIN TITLES IN OUR CATALOG). ISBN 8889431148. $90.00

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