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Motion Studies: Time, Space and Eadweard Muybridge [Hardcover]

Rebecca Solnit
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

17 Feb 2003
In 1872, an Englishman photographed a running horse in California and succeeded for the first time in capturing an image of high-speed motion - the crucial breakthrough that eventually made movies possible. His patron, the philanthropist tycoon Leland Stanford, wanted to know if his trotter Occident ever lifted all four hooves at once - never suspecting what innovations Muybridge's experiments would unleash. From Muybridge's invention came Hollywood and from his patron Stanford's sponsorship of technological research came Silicon Valley - two industries that have most powerfully shaped the modern world. The story of Muybridge's own life while he was making his motion studies is equally riveting. He became an internationally renowned inventor and photographer whose pictures of the war against the Modoc Indians and the monumental landscape of the American West have now become classics - and in a blaze of publicity, stood trial for the murder of his wife's lover. Gripping and erudite, this is a fascinating biography of a true pioneer and the larger story of how time and space were revolutionised in the nineteenth century.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC (17 Feb 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0747562202
  • ISBN-13: 978-0747562207
  • Product Dimensions: 23.4 x 15.8 x 3.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,224,112 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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"...this is a book of powerful originality, offering a glimpse of what biography can be in the right hands." -- The Daily Telegraph 15th February

"...vivid and gives life to a solitary, often tormented man." -- The Evening Standard 10th February

A biography of a true pioneer at a time when time and space were being revolutionised. -- Times Chronicle Series

A superb account of how photography connected some significant players in late nineteenth-century America. -- British Journal of Photography

Combines biography, cultural history and cinematography in a refreshing, well-written and absorbing bouillabaisse of a book. -- Independent Magazine

Solnit can produce prose of startling vigour and wit. -- Independent on Sunday

This is a book of powerful originality, offering a glimpse of what biography can be in the right hands. -- Daily Telegraph

From the Publisher

"Historians of photography have long since been aware of Eadweard Muybridge as the proto-inventor of motion pictures. Now, thanks to Rebecca Solnit's absorbing new study, we understand Muybridge to have been a protean figure bringing the future into being by de-constructing and re-assembling time and space itself."

Dr. Kevin Starr, State Librarian of California

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing person; fantastic biography 6 May 2004
By A Customer
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Wonderful biography about a truly amazing person. The 19th century still photographs of people and animals in motion taken by Muybridge are known to so many - yet how many know his remarkable story ? Here at last is an affordable and excellent biography - and the book is lavishly illustrated as well. The cover is a work of art in itself - another in a long line of excellent covers from Bloomsbury. This book is a little gem.
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