Unfamiliar Streets: The Photographs of Richard Avedon, Charles Moore, Martha Rosler, and Philip-Lorca diCorcia

Unfamiliar Streets: The Photographs of Richard Avedon, Charles Moore, Martha Rosler, and Philip-Lorca diCorcia

by Katherine A. Bussard
     
 

City scenes have been chronicled in photographs since the early 1800s, but street photography as traditionally defined has captured a relatively narrow field of these images. Revolutionizing the history of street photography, Unfamiliar Streets explores the work of Richard Avedon (1923–2004), Charles Moore (1931–2010), Martha Rosler (b. 1943), and

Overview

City scenes have been chronicled in photographs since the early 1800s, but street photography as traditionally defined has captured a relatively narrow field of these images. Revolutionizing the history of street photography, Unfamiliar Streets explores the work of Richard Avedon (1923–2004), Charles Moore (1931–2010), Martha Rosler (b. 1943), and Philip-Lorca diCorcia (b. 1951), four American photographers whose careers in fashion, photojournalism, conceptual art, and contemporary art are not usually associated with the genre.
 
Bussard’s lively and engaging text, a timely response to a growing interest in urban photography, challenges the traditional understanding of street photography and makes original and important connections among urban culture, social history, and the visual arts, constructing a new historical model for understanding street photography. Illustrated with more than one hundred images, this book provides an interpretation of a compelling genre that is as fresh as its consideration of the city streets themselves, sites of commerce, dispossession, desire, demonstration, power, and spectacle.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
03/24/2014
Attempting to consider "the street equally as site and subject", Bussard (coauthor of Color Rush) offers a shift in the academic understanding of street photography. The book centers on four topics—the Parisian streets of Richard Avedon's fashion photography; the streets of Birmingham, erupting into civil rights protests in the photojournalism of Charles Moore; the empty Bowery, paired alongside text, in the conceptual work of Martha Rosler; and iconic Times Square as explored by Philip-Lorca diCorcia, the only one of those included who is commonly considered a street photographer. These case studies bring a number of disciplines to bear on the photographs, including history, urban studies, and sociology, and it is this attempted elaboration of the genre that is Bussard's true project. As she describes it, her goal is to offer "a generative model to others who aim to expand the conversation surrounding street photographs." The chapters themselves stand as proof to this possibility. Bussard moves through the broadness of her subject with ease, and her insights make it clear that, in the right hands, her suggested mode has much to offer. Stunning images, rolling questions, and a genuinely fresh way of viewing familiar subjects all come fruitfully together. Color illus. (Mar.)
Conscientious Photo Magazine

“Bussard has found and deftly attended to one of the most glaring gaps in discussions about photography today . . . I hope there will be more books like this one. We really need them.”—Conscientious Photo Magazine

Robin Kelsey

“No one who reads Bussard’s argument will think of street photography in quite the same way again.” ––Robin Kelsey, Harvard University

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780300192261
Publisher:
Yale University Press
Publication date:
03/11/2014
Pages:
232
Sales rank:
1,151,725
Product dimensions:
9.30(w) x 11.30(h) x 0.90(d)

Meet the Author

Katherine A. Bussard is Peter C. Bunnell Curator of Photography at the Princeton University Art Museum.

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