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Henri Cartier-Bresson: The Modern Century Hardcover – 12 Apr 2010


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 376 pages
  • Publisher: Thames and Hudson Ltd (12 April 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0500543917
  • ISBN-13: 978-0500543917
  • Product Dimensions: 25.1 x 3.5 x 30.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 124,979 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Henri Cartier-Bresson (August 22, 1908 - August 3, 2004) is perhaps the greatest photographer of the twentieth century. In a career spanning over sixty years, he has used his camera as an impassive and neutral third eye to capture the vagaries of human behaviour and to produce some of the most memorable and compelling photographs ever published.

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Review

`Magnificent ... it pulses with the vitality of a man who began travelling, camera in hand, aged 22 and didn't stop for nearly half a century' --The Daily Telegraph

`Shows Cartier-Bresson as one of the most dogged and respected witnesses to the last century, seemingly always in the right place at the right time' --Seven Magazine, The Sunday Telegraph

'He [Cartier-Bresson] had an extraordinary ability to capture in one frame a whole raft of imagery and meaning, to portray the essence of the world in one picture'
--Jinx Rodger, The Times

`A perfect summary of the time and the place, testament to his talent and the diversity of the world' --Traveller

`Exemplifies a modesty of spirit and an eye for detail ... it's not to be missed'
--Professional Photographer

'Brings a fresh, sympathetic understanding to the panoramic scope of the great photographer's work... packed with both famous images and those never seen before' --The Financial Times

'Perhaps the most exhaustive collection of Cartier-Bresson's work we've seen outside of his own estate, and for £55 this is incredible value' --Amateur Photographer

'A magnificent new appreciation of the French father of photojournalism'
--Metro

'We want something more than we are already familiar with. And this book [...] in being both authoritative and beautiful, fulfils that desire. ...exceptional' --Black and White Photography

'... a valuable collector's item. ...The scope of the book is so extensive that the reader will be inspired on multiple levels' --Silvershotz: The International Journal of Fine Art Photography

'A fabulous piece of scholarship, bringing together many decades of photo journalism from one of the recognised masters.'
--Professional Image Maker

'[Galassi's essay is] a dynamic, informative and sympathetic account of this highly prolific, successful and celebrated French photographer'
--The Art Newspaper

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By A. Severn on 25 April 2011
Format: Hardcover
This collection has probably the most generous inclusion of previously unpublished or little published work, but although I return to it frequently I remain unsure that it is necessarily the best. I think I prefer the Thames & Hudson collections. The print sizes in the T&H titles are usually larger and generally the printing is better.

The other slightly strange thing is that I realise how used I have become to seeing HC-B's pictures with the black key-lines (the negative edges) he insisted on as an indication that the image was uncropped and seen as he intended. THE MODERN CENTURY does away with the black edges and to me this makes the prints look a little naked on the page. Most will not be bothered by this.

There is remarkable work in this new collection, of course -- but possibly too much of it. The placing of multiple pictures on the page reduces rather than increases their impact, and introduces a tendency in the reader to skim in a way that I don't think you do when the publication has one picture per page. I'll give an example. On p.203 there is an extraordinary photograph -- but it isn't immediately evident just how extraordinary it is. It isn't terribly sharp and it isn't terribly well printed. It shows young women dancing as apart of the parade during the celebrations of the People's Republic of China's ninth anniversary. I had turned the page before I realised that every figure as far as the eye can see in the photograph ha both feet simultaneously off the ground. What in other hands would have been a rather workaday journalism assignment in HC-B's hands becomes a little miracle of timing (and editing).

But somehow, this present collection seems to require harder work than any other HC-B title I have to mine out the marvels. They are there. But I'm still not quite sure that the presentation and printing do them full justice.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Stickler on 31 July 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
First impressions are important, although they can be misleading. The dustjacket of this book is a graphic design disaster. The eye is first assaulted by a combination of plum red and intense egg-yolk yellow. Once the senses have become acclimatized to this almost nausea inducing juxtaposition of colours, once notices the ugly typeface of the title; it bears a distinct similarity to the one that was used for Wild West "wanted" posters. The eyes now take in the text of the title, "Henri Cartier-Bresson" (obviously nothing wrong with that) "the Modern Century" - the what? Have I missed something? Is this now the accepted "name" for the 20th Century? No, it isn't. Each century is, or was "modern" at some stage. I think it would be fair to say the 21st Century is and is likely to remain for some time, modern. The title is silly. Lastly one notices a small picture imbedded in the text; a photograph taken by H.C-B, but a poor choice of image for the cover.

It's a pity that MOMA didn't employ the splendid German publishers Schirmer & Mosel, not only to design the book/catalogue, but also to give the exhibition and catalogue a better title. The German edition of this tome has an attractive and appropriately black and white dustjacket and is entitled "Henri Cartier-Bresson, his 20th Century" ("Henri Cartier-Bresson, sein 20. Jahrhundert")

However - of course this is all of less consequence than the content of the book, which is indeed good. There are several photographs here one has either not seen for a long time, or not at all. The images are beautifully printed on satisfyingly thick paper.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
HCB is one of the great seminal photographers associated with the Magnum foundation. To understand the essence of photography his work has to be delicately viewed and reviewed. Simply, he was the best. I bought this book to source valuable information and references for my dissertation which focussed on surrealism and existentialism.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Marco Paoluzzo on 19 Jan. 2013
Format: Hardcover
Just to be short, I am not a big fan of Cartier-Bresson. In my eyes, he is the Picasso of photography, good, but a little bit dated. But if you want to have a good idea of his work, this is probably the best selection ever made. Besides, the printing is brilliant.
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5 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Jon A. Crowcroft on 1 Aug. 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
very interesting and wel put togethe collection of cartierbresson work - well worth adding to my set of photo books
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