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Malcolm, Janet (Author); Avedon, Richard; Frank, Robert; Winogrand, Garry & Other Photographers. DIANA & NIKON: ESSAYS ON THE AESTHETIC OF PHOTOGRAPHY. Boston, MA: David R. Godine, 1980. Hardcover. First Edition/First Printing. 165 pages. Fine/Fine.

The author's collection of essays on subject, and first book. One of the most important books on photography of the 20th century. The First Hardcover Edition. Precedes and should not be confused with all other subsequent editions, particularly the 1997 New Edition. Published in a small and limited first print run as a hardcover original only. In terms of sheer production values, it is vastly superior in every way to the 1997 Edition. The First Edition is now rare. An austerely elegant production by David R. Godine: Regular-sized volume format. Purple cloth boards with metallic-silver titles embossed on spine, as issued. Text by Janet Malcolm. Photographs by various artist/photographers, whose work is discussed in the essays. Printed on pristine-white, archival stock paper in the United States to the highest standards. In pictorial DJ with titles on the cover and spine, as issued. Presents Janet Malcolm's "Diana & Nikon: Essays On The Aesthetic of Photography". One of the earliest and most insightful appreciations of photography from a Modernist perspective. Malcolm's aim is not to affirm or assert but to re-examine our conventional notions about photography. Her pioneering essays on Alfred Stieglitz, Edward Steichen, Edward Weston, Robert Frank, Irving Penn, Richard Avedon, William Eggleston, Garry Winogrand, and Harry Callahan remain as fresh and absorbing as when they were first published in 1980, nearly forty years ago. In these "case studies", Malcolm examines photography's growing maturity as an art that demands to be assessed and appreciated by people who take the arts seriously. She links this "threshold" development to photography's move away from its Pictorialist history, when it consciously mimicked painting, toward its alignment with Modernist aesthetics, which eventually allowed individual genius-photographers (like Robert Frank and Garry Winogrand) to find and develop its own distinctive profile and genre. The single greatest photographic genre, "street photography", is inherently and indeed purely "photographic" (as opposed to "painterly"). Whereas all portrait photography, which has also equalled and in some cases, surpassed its predecessors in painting, will nevertheless always owe a residual debt to the traditional visual arts. An absolute "must-have" title for Janet Malcolm collectors. This copy is very prominently, neatly, and beautifully signed, dated (in the month and year of publication), and inscribed in black ink-pen on the half-title page by the author: "For Fred Rothenberg, a great craftsman with affection, Janet Malcolm, August 1980". It is signed directly on the page itself, not on a tipped-in page. The recipient is one of the most respected and successful commercial American photographers. This title is a great collection. As far as we know, this is the only such signed, dated, and inscribed copy of the First Hardcover Edition/First Printing available online and despite its slight imperfection (soiling on white DJ) remains in especially fine condition: Every single page is clean, crisp, and bright. Please note: Signed copies by Janet Malcolm are rare. Malcolm has remained an extreme introvert who has done no more than a few public signings in her career. We have NOT seen a copy as collectible as this unique association copy. A rare signed copy thus. One of the most brilliant American writers of our time. A fine collectible copy. (SEE ALSO OTHER JANET MALCOLM TITLES IN OUR CATALOG). ISBN 0879232730. $200.00

This item is available for purchase. This web page was most recently updated on October 18, 2017.