In Photography After Frank, former New York Times writer and picture editor Philip Gefter narrates the tale of contemporary photography, beginning at the pivotal moment when Robert Frank commenced his seminal works of the 1950s. Along the way, he connects the dots of photography's evolution into what it is today, forging links between its episodes to reveal unsuspected leaps. Gefter takes Frank's The Americans as a decisive challenge to photographic objectivity, with its grainy, off-hand-seeming spontaneity and its documentation of life beyond the picket fence. Thus viewed, The Americans provides Gefter with a bridge to the phenomenon of the staged document and Postmodernism's further challenge to image fidelity. Other areas of discussion include photojournalism, the recent diversity of portraiture styles, the influence of private and corporate collections on curatorial decisions and how the market shapes art making. Throughout Photography After Frank, Gefter deftly demonstrates Frank's legacy in the work of dozens of important individual artists who followed in his wake, from Lee Friedlander and Nan Goldin to Stephen Shore and Ryan McGinley. The book includes texts written exclusively for this publication as well as essays drawn from Gefter's critical writings, reviews and even obituaries. Photography After Frank offers a page-turning approach to a subject that will appeal to students and art world aficionados alike.
PHILIP GEFTER was a New York Times staff member for over fifteen years. Early in his career, he was a picture editor at Fortune and GEO and an assistant editor at Aperture. He writes regularly for various publications and is a founding member of the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association. Gefter has a BFA in painting and photography from Pratt Institute, New York.