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I have long known the name of Robert Doisneau and he was responsible for one of the most iconic images of WW2. It was taken at the time of the liberation of Paris and shows a couple having a celebratory kiss (a later version is shown on the cover, but it does not possess the impact or sense of exhilaration of the original). It is often compared to a similar image taken in London on VE day almost a year later, although I cannot currently recall the photographer in that instance.

Although Doisneau was no less a talent than Lartigue, Atget, Cartier-Bresson and several others who were either French or working in France during the early to middle decades of the Twentieth Century, his images are perhaps less familiar outside of France than those of the others. He concentrated on street photography and largely his interest was less the weird and wonderful than the everyday scene. The images here are presented by chapter and generally themed. One group was taken during the German occupation and not only shows German troops (if caught, he could have been shot) but also of the Resistance fighters shooting in the streets of Paris in an attempt to rid them of the occupier. We know the outcome of that! He did take risks but they paid dividends in that an important phase of history was recorded for all time.

Doisneau definitely possessed the ability not only to see what was happening around him but to photograph it in such a way as to make it interesting for the viewer, and to be something of beauty. He was not as varied a photographer as was Cartier-Bresson or the Hungarian-born Kertesz (who often worked in France) who both might photograph anything, but Doisneau was more interested in people whether at work, play or just watching others. That in no way devalues his art and skill, or limits his importance.

This one of several published by the German firm of Taschen, this time in English, and their output can be directly compared with Thames & Hudson. The book isn't large in size but it provides an excellent cross-section of the work of a master photographer. Get it, if only to help with your own imagery and perception.
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on 9 September 2010
Be warned this is the tiny version (barely postcard size) of this book and not the coffee table size I had expected. I thought the price was too good to be true. It will teach me to be extra vigilant when buying books. It will fit in your handbag if that is what you are looking for! Great pictures all the same - but I am not sure what use it is to anyone.
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on 27 February 2012
Until I went to the Museum of National Resistance in Champigny-sur-Marne (not far from Paris) I knew of Robert Doisneau chiefly for his 'Kiss at the Hotel de Ville' photograph and the subsequent court case.

At the Museum I saw prints of some of Doisneau's wartime photographs. These set me on the hunt for more information.

This little book provides great value for money, good basic information as well as selection of his work; it may also (as it did for me)have the reader going 'Ah, so it was HIM that took this!' when they come across familiar images.

Since buying this, I have found other more specialised books on his work and have been to one Doisneau axhibition and am about to go to a second about Doisneau's pictures of Les Halles - which also has an accompanying book available from Amazon and reviewed by me elsewhere.
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on 25 January 2011
Yes, great images. Book size very disappointing.

I am adding to a collection of photographic books, hardly 'special' book material.

Amazon needs to make book sizes a must for all sellers.
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on 15 December 2016
Excellent book with Robert Doisneau's fantastic photography and written in 3 languages so really useful if you wanted to give the book as a gift to a friend from another country. Good second hand and exactly as described. I would recommend this seller
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on 24 January 2012
In spite of what two other reviewers have said about being disappointed about the size of the book which I feel is a totally unjustified AND stupid comment considering the dimensions are shown in the description of the item, unless neither of them know how to use a ruler? I think this is one of Doisneaus best books to date with so many varied photographs and themes included in it. The accompanying text is both interesting and helpful and I for one will be looking out for others!
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on 13 September 2016
Smaller book than I expected but the photos are beautiful. Used as research for costume design and they did not disappoint.
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on 1 February 2010
If yes, please, please buy it. Words cannot describe how wonderful this man, as a photographer, is. Buy it, buy it, buy it, buy it, I'm not going to stop until you do, buy it, buy it, buy it, buy it, buy it. Ok, point made. You don't want to read loads of fawning waffle so buy it and see how this man was a corner-stone of modern photography. Yes, I know he's a middling in terms of period, but look at his images and imagine them in colour. Just get it. It's stupidly cheap for a book and book are for life.
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on 7 December 2016
Lovely book, bigger than I anticipated which was great, and covers all his most famous works!
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on 13 March 2018
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