Image of SOMBRA: PHOTOGRAPHS BY RUVEN AFANADOR
(Click for larger image)


Afanador, Ruven (Photographer); Gaultier, Jean-Paul (Contributor) & Tatum, Channing (Model). SOMBRA: PHOTOGRAPHS BY RUVEN AFANADOR. London, England: Merrell Publishers Limited, 2004. Hardcover. First Edition/First Printing. Unpaginated. Fine/Fine.

Retrospective collection of male nudes. Now considered a contemporary art photography classic. The First Hardcover Edition. Precedes and should not be confused with all other subsequent editions. Published in a small and limited first print run as a hardcover original only. The First Edition is now rare. A brilliant production by Ruven Afanador and Monika Sziladi: Oversize-volume format. Black cloth boards with metallic-silver titles embossed on spine, as issued. Photographs and Afterword by Ruven Afanador. The book is 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 most influential fashion designers of our time. Printed on pristine-white, thick coated stock paper in Italy to the highest standards. The reproduction quality is exemplary in every respect. In pictorial DJ with white titles on the cover and spine, as issued. Presents Ruven Afanador's "Sombra". Stunning and innovative yet lyrical images, a high leap that would have made Baryshnikov proud, and a meltingly beautiful performance of a book. Almost all of the photographs are full-frontal nudes in balletic poses interspersed with 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 dark, rich tones and rigorous 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). One of the images is a full-frontal nude of the (then-unknown and lean) Hollywood star Channing Tatum. But you would not recognize him because of its Man Ray-inspired solarization. An absolute "must-have" title for Ruven Afanador collectors. This copy is very boldly and beautifully signed in maroon ink-pen by Ruven Afanador. It is signed directly on the page itself, not on a tipped-in page. His signature is flamboyant, elaborate, one-of-a-kind. This title is a contemporary art photography classic. As far as we know, this is the only such signed copy of the First Hardcover Edition/First Printing available online and is in especially fine condition: Clean, crisp, and bright, a pristine beauty. Please note: Copies available online, un-signed, command hundreds of dollars because of the book's rarity. This is surely an accessible and lovely alternative. A rare signed copy thus. Lavishly illustrated with toned plates. One of the most brilliant photographers of our time. A fine collectible copy. . ISBN 1858942497. $150.00

This item is available for purchase. This web page was most recently updated on October 15, 2019.