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Workers: An Archaeology of the Industrial Age
     

Workers: An Archaeology of the Industrial Age

by Sebastiao Salgado
 

More than those of any other living photographer, Sebastião Salgado’s images of the world’s poor stand in tribute to the human condition. His transforming photographs bestow dignity on the most isolated and neglected, from famine-stricken refugees in the Sahel to the indigenous peoples of South America. Workers is a global epic that

Overview

More than those of any other living photographer, Sebastião Salgado’s images of the world’s poor stand in tribute to the human condition. His transforming photographs bestow dignity on the most isolated and neglected, from famine-stricken refugees in the Sahel to the indigenous peoples of South America. Workers is a global epic that transcends mere imagery to become an affirmation of the enduring spirit of working women and men. The book is an archaeological exploration of the activities that have defined labor from the Stone Age through the Industrial Age, to the present. Divided into six categories—”Agriculture,” “Food,” “Mining,” “Industry,” “Oil” and “Construction”—the book unearths layers of visual information to reveal the ceaseless human activity at the core of modern civilization. Extended captions provide a historical and factual framework for the images. “Salgado unveils the pain, the beauty, and the brutality of the world of work on which everything rests,” wrote Arthur Miller of this photobook classic, upon its original publication in 1993. “This is a collection of deep devotion and impressive skill.” An elegy for the passing of traditional methods of labor and production, Workers delivers a message of endurance and hope.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This book is the photography of humanity."--Gabriel Garcia Marquez
"Salgado unveils the pain, the beauty, and the brutality of the world of work on which everything rests. This is a collection of deep devotion and impressive skill."--Arthur Miller
"Sebastiao Salgado has produced an elaborate, deluxe paean to laborers throughout the world, from tea harvesters in Rwanda to oil-well firefighters and well-cappers in Kuwait...He brings to the composition of photojournalism skills akin to those of the painter Caravaggio. "Workers "offers additional evidence of this mannerist style, which has its photographic roots in the legacy of W. Eugene Smith...There is no denying that Mr. Salgado's photographs command attention."--Andy Grundberg, "The New York Times Book Review"
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Even as machines, robots and computers replace workers, Salgado's powerful, striking photographs reveal the backbreaking and unrelenting toil that is still the lot of millions of men and women around the globe. Never preachy or didactic, these 350 duotone images of tea pickers in Rwanda, dam builders in India, steelworkers in France and Ukraine, sugarcane harvesters in Brazil, assembly-line workers in Russia and China, sulfur miners in Indonesia and others, pay tribute to working people who preserve their dignity in the harshest conditions. In the lyrical accompanying essay, Salgado ( An Uncertain Grace ) laments Japan's industrial fishing which decimates fish stocks, France's agricultural policies and the global exploitation of manual laborers who do the bulk of the world's work. (Sept.)
Library Journal
Salgado, an economist by training, documents the unforgettable faces of workers at their jobs around the world. His widely published images of the oil-field firefighters in Kuwait may be the most familiar to U.S. readers. The catalog for a traveling exhibition, this book is divided into six chapters--Agriculture, Food, Mining, Industry, Oil, and Construction--that show the basest realities of work in some of its uncountable forms, from fishing in Spain, to textile factories in Kazakhstan, Eurotunnel construction in France, a slaughterhouse in South Dakota, and gold miners in Brazil. The reader almost never sees a smiling face or evidence of job satisfaction. Instead, this is an iconography of wage-labor toil, alienation, and survival. The location and subject of each related group of images are announced in the table of contents; otherwise, one needs to consult a separate softbound booklet in a pocket in the back, which offers Salgado's facts and statistics about the particular natural resource, geographical area, and type of work pictured. The reproductions here are of superb quality. The winner of numerous international photography awards, Salgado ( An Uncertain Grace , LJ 2/1/91) has renewed the ``concerned photographer'' genre and produced one of the finest books of this decade. Essential for all art and photography collections.-- Kathleen Collins, New York Transit Museum Archives, Brooklyn
Internet Bookwatch
Photographer Salgado's unique photographic works are internationally acclaimed pieces: this presents his ongoing focus on the industrial age and the human condition. He defines his work as 'militant photography' dedicated to an understanding of man in society: this provides over three hundred duotone photos from an archaeological perspective of the human activities which have defined the Industrial Revolution past to present. His introductory text provides fine explanation of his photographic focus and intentions.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780893815257
Publisher:
Aperture Foundation
Publication date:
06/28/2005
Pages:
400
Sales rank:
289,907
Product dimensions:
10.10(w) x 13.10(h) x 1.50(d)

Meet the Author

Sebastião Salgado (born in Aimorés, Brazil, 1944) began working as a professional photographer in 1973. Since then, he has published numerous books, held solo shows, received international awards, and along with his wife, Lélia Wanick Salgado, founded Amazonas images, an agency created for his work.

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