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Women [Paperback]

Annie Leibovitz
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Oct 2000
The photographs by Annie Leibovitz in Women, taken especially for the book, encompass a broad spectrum of subjects: a rap artist, an astronaut, two Supreme Court justices, farmers, coal miners, movie stars, showgirls, rodeo riders, socialites, reporters, dancers, a maid, a general, a surgeon, the First Lady of the United States, the secretary of state, a senator, rock stars, prostitutes, teachers, singers, athletes, poets, writers, painters, musicians, theater directors, political activists, performance artists, and businesswomen. "Each of these pictures must stand on its own," Susan Sontag writes in the essay that accompanies the portraits. "But the ensemble says, So this what women are now -- as different, as varied, as heroic, as forlorn, as conventional, as unconventional as this."

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Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Random House (NY); Reprint edition (Oct 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0375756469
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375756467
  • Product Dimensions: 31.4 x 24.5 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 946,586 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Annie Leibovitz is the recipient of many honours, including both first and second place in the American Society of Magazine Editors' recent compilation of the forty top magazine covers of the past forty years. She is renowned for her work in Vanity Fair, Vogue and Rolling Stone. Leibovitz was designated a Living Legend by the Library of Congress in 2000 and an Officier in the French Ordre des Arts et des Lettres in 2002. Smithsonian Magazine named her one of the thirty-five Innovators of Our Time in November 2005. Jonathan Cape have published three books of her photographs: Women, with Susan Sontag (1999), American Music (2003) and A Photographer's Life (2006). She lives in New York City.

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Amazon Review

Each of the extraordinary portraits made by photographer Annie Leibovitz for her book Women stands on its own. Looked at together, these "photographs of people with nothing more in common than that they are women (and living in America at the end of the 20th century), all--well almost all--fully clothed", writes Susan Sontag in the book's preface, form "an anthology of destinies and disabilities and new possibilities." Leibovitz, who in her years working for Rolling Stone, Vogue and Vanity Fair magazines has photographed hundreds of celebrities, turns her lens on a wide range of ordinary and extraordinary female subjects: Coal miners, socialites, first ladies, artists, domestic-violence victims, an astronaut, a surgeon, a maid. What she creates is a reflection of contemporary American womanhood that mirrors both women's accomplishments and the challenges they still face individually and as a group. Leibovitz demonstrates her own range as a photographer in this body of work, shooting in the studio and natural settings and working in both black-and-white and colour film. She depicts model Jerry Hall wearing a little black dress, a fur coat, and high heels, staring frankly at the viewer from a velvet chair in a plush red parlour while her naked infant son nurses from her exposed right breast. Schoolteacher Lamis Srour's eyes-- the only part of her face visible behind her heavy black veil--illuminate a dark black-and-white portrait. Leibovitz frames actress Elizabeth Taylor and her dog Sugar by their shocks of snow-white hair. She captures four Kilgore College Rangerettes, a drill team, at the apex of their kicks--white-booted legs pointing up, obscuring their faces and revealing the red underpants beneath their blue miniskirts. There are many more wonderful and unexpected images here, over 200 in all. The delight in discovering them awaits readers. -- Jordana Moskowitz --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

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4.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
This book deserves more than five stars. I think it would make a wonderful gift for any young woman starting to decide what it means for her to be a woman.
As Susan Sontag tells us in the essay, "Each of these pictures must stand on its own. But the ensemble says, So this is what women are now -- as different, as varied, as heroic, as forlorn, as conventional, as unconventional as this."
This exciting book will challenge everyone's concept of what women are and can be in their roles. Many viewers will be uncomfortable with those poerful challenges, while others will find the images to be mentally liberating. "Ambition is what women have been schooled to stifle in themselves, and what is celebrated in a book of photographs that emphasizes the variety of women's lives today," according to Susan Sontag.
Underneath this conceptual work comes a theme built around a striking new sense of what beauty means in a woman, and it has nothing to do with youth and physical perfection. Ms. Leibovitz wonderfully captures what I think of as "soulful" beauty in this remarkable collection of new photographs done for this book. Interestingly, her most beautiful "soul pictures" come of people who are the oldest and have the most lined faces -- like her mother and sculptress Louise Bourgeois. I fell in love with all women, more than ever before, from being with these images. They reminded me of the beauty in the fundamental connection we all have to women, and women have to the fundamentals of life.
As Susan Sontag points out, "Such a book . . . is also about women's attractiveness." "Forever young, forever good-looking, forever sexy -- beauty is still a construction, a transformation, a masquerade." Only occasionally will you see an image of traditional concepts of beauty.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic 19 Jan 2001
By A Customer
The main point in this book has to be the diversity of the subjects and the superb way in which they are photographed. Annie Liebovitz (mostly of Vanity Fair fame) intelligently leads the way to comparisons between all the women portrayed. Some are beautiful, some are powerful, some are generals, some are cleaners, strippers, failed singers or successful singers, comedians, politicians and so on. A lovely, lovely book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely amazing! 11 Dec 2001
By F
Breathtaking pictures of women from all over the world, from Hollywood stars, to New York senators, from judges to coal miners, from socialites to abused women. Leibovitz captures the female form perfectly. A must have for both sexes.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Women - a tasteful and intelligent collection of images that somehow manages to encompass and embody all that is female. Mothers, waitresses, strippers, astronauts, mountain bikers, actresses, the diversity of the collection is what makes this book an excellent choice. Images are shot in both colour and black and white, both action and still photgraphy is included. we are left with a feeling of being a little closer to knowing what women are all about; strength, grace, vulnerability, humour, metaphor and irony. the photgraphs are gorgeous. a must buy.
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