Photographs, 1970-1990 Hardcover – 31 Oct 1991
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Top Customer Reviews
Before going into all the reasons I like this book, let me mention that the book contains tasteful nudity and sexual situations that would probably cause an R rating for a motion picture (or possibly something a bit stronger, like an R plus). Many parents would be uncomfortable with some of their children seeing these images. So judge the appropriateness of this wonderful book for your own family.
First, Ms. Leibovitz is looking for the soul of the person. Who are they at the core? This is captured by establishing a composition that overtly expresses this inner kernel of truth. For Roseanne Barr and Tom Arnold, this is captured by mud wrestling. For Muhammad Ali, you see a fully confident, capable man fully comfortable with himself and the world.
Second, she captures the subject's personality with posing and expression within the composition. Whoopi Goldberg's playfulness is captured by a composition that has little bits of her beautiful blackness emerging from a milk bath, with a characteristicly wry, happy smile.
Third, she shows the social mask that the subject uses. Lily Tomlin's face poses behind a television set image. Diane Keaton is shown wandering around with her face averted from the camera to capture her preference for privacy and appearance of shyness.Read more ›
When I got to this page to write the review I read what Donald Mitchell has written and agreed with every line. He has captured what Annie shows in her photos into words. I do not think that I can do better justice to her work than he has so I recommend that you read his review and buy this book.
What I will say for those of you who may not be familiar with her photographgs is that as a child I wanted more than anything for her to snap me and my friends. This has got to be the ultimate endorsement for her talent. Celebrities willingly sacrifice themselves to her to have her work her magic and free their spirits, and yet little girls growing up in the back streets of California wanted to be immortalised by her as well.
A true master.
Pretentious, forced, superficial. She makes her subjects look as stupid as she is. One photo by Diane Arbus is worth more than the entire oeuvre of Annie Leibowitz. Even if she were expressing the banality of post modern culture, even if she was exploring the surface superficialities of the photographic medium, her photos are still boring. It's a mystery to me why most people think she's great, but then life is full of mysteries.