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Photography


04.17.14: Rick Poynor

The Conceptual Advertising of J.G. Ballard
J.G. Ballard’s conceptual ads anticipated the emergence of culture jamming, subvertising, design fiction and speculative design.
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04.13.14: John Foster

The Focused Obsession of Photographer Rob Amberg
Rob Amberg is an award winning a documentary photographer who lives with his wife live on a small farm in the same NC county he photographs. His subjects have been neighbors and acquaintances, friends of friends and strangers he has met.
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04.08.14: David Morris

The Public Library
“The public library is a singularly American invention.” An excerpt from the new book The Public Library: A Photographic Essay.
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04.06.14: John Foster

Found, Cut, and Rearranged: The Art of John Stezaker
For almost four decades, the artist John Stezaker has steadfastly been appropriating “found” press photographs, film stills, imagery from books, old postcards, and the like, to create a strikingly new way of seeing photography.
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03.30.14: John Foster

The Greenville, NC Daily Reflector: 1948 to 1967
One of the best ways to investigate the life and times of a region is to look at the local photo files from the daily newspaper.
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03.09.14: John Foster

Blues, Baptisms, and Prison Farms: The Lomax Snapshots of 1934-1950
Blues, Baptisms, and Prison Farms: The Lomax Snapshots of 1934-1950
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03.06.14: Alexandra Lange

Not Afraid of Noise: Mexico City Stories
A photographic tour of Mexico City, house by house, wall by wall.
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02.23.14: John Foster

The Dreamland Motel
A reivew of the vanishing signage of our American landscape.
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02.16.14: John Foster

Face Time
This week, John Foster looks at the endless fascination we have with the human face and the myriad ways it can be transformed.
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02.14.14: Rick Poynor

From the Archive: Surface Wreckage
Why do photographs and images of torn street posters exert such a powerful hold on the imagination and emotions?
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02.09.14: John Foster

The Private World of Martina Kubelk
A photo album containing 99 pages and over 380 photographs; self-portraits of a man in women’s clothes.
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01.26.14: John Foster

Imperfect Beauty
A collection of 26 photographic images with either deliberate or accidental flaws.
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12.19.13: Rob Walker

Mona Lisa Selfies
Inevitably, the famous Mona Lisa has crossed paths with the selfie — and the results are charming.
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12.15.13: John Foster

Garry Winogrand Retrospective At National Gallery
Accidental Mysteries for December 15, 2013 fouses on street photographer Garry Winogrand.
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12.01.13: John Foster

Messenger Boys, Call Girls and a Photographer
Accidental Mysteries for December 1, 2013 focuses on the photography of Lewis Wickes Hine, whose photographs were instrumental in changing the child labor laws in the United States.
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11.24.13: John Foster

Graphics of Authority
Accidental Mysteries for November 24, 2013 takes a look at the police cars that may or may not want to be seen.
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11.13.13: Gordon Salchow

New Haven, November 22, 1963
A gallery of images taken by Gordon Salchow in New Haven on the day President John F. Kennedy, Jr. was assassinated.
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11.11.13: Rick Poynor

Collage Culture: Nostalgia and Critique
An interview with David Banash, author of Collage Culture: Readymades, Meaning, and the Age of Consumption.
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10.30.13: Rick Poynor

Belgian Solutions: The True State of Things?
The foul-ups or “Belgian solutions” in a new book of street photographs are simply the way things are.
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10.27.13: John Foster

Welcome to the Asylum
Accidental Mysteries for October 27, 2013 reaches deep into the creepiness of the asylum.
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10.10.13: Rick Poynor

New York: City of Spectacular Doors
For six years, Allan Markman crisscrossed New York taking pictures of remarkable doors for a new book.
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09.16.13: Rick Poynor

Bohumil Stepan's Family Album of Oddities
Bohumil Stepan’s Familienalbum presents a series of surreally equipped and irreverently modified collages of his family.
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09.15.13: John Foster

Artful Mourning
Accidental Mysteries for September 15, 2013 focuses on the art of mourning in nineteenth and early twentieth century post-mortem and memorial photographs and memorabilia.
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09.07.13: Rick Poynor

Bohumil Stepan's Gallery of Erotic Humor
Mapp Editions has released a digital version of Bohumil Stepan’s Galerie (1968), a surreal collection of collages and drawings about the relationship between the sexes.
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08.29.13: Rick Poynor

The Hotel that Dreamed It Was a Museum
The Walpole Bay Hotel: Living Museum, junk-clogged bane of hotel inspectors, or Wunderkammer?
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08.22.13: Rick Poynor

Collage Now, Part 1: Sergei Sviatchenko
In a crowded field, Sergei Sviatchenko’s highly reductive photo-collages look like his own and no one else’s.
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08.22.13: Rick Poynor

Collage Now, Part 2: Cut and Paste Culture
Cut-and-paste culture is booming and collage-making is rampant: paper-based, digital, and all points between.
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08.15.13: Rick Poynor

Keld Helmer-Petersen: Pioneer of Color
An accessible edition of Keld Helmer-Petersen’s 122 Colour Photographs, a landmark 1948 photobook.
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08.12.13: Rob Walker

An Accidental Time Capsule
Snapshots of late-September 2001 signage reveal a tentative American moment.
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08.09.13: Rick Poynor

David Maisel and the Apocalyptic Sublime
David Maisel’s photographs are visions of the Earth as we have never seen it full of beauty and terror.
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07.28.13: John Foster

The Portrait in Snapshot Photography
Accidental Mysteries for July 28, 2013 focuses on the snapshot.
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07.21.13: John Foster

A Street Photographer of 19th Century London
Accidental Mysteries for July 21, 2013 shines a light on a street photographer from 19th century London.
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07.10.13: Rick Poynor

The Incidental Pleasures of Street Art
Sprawling, evolving, accreting: a collection of recent street art photos from Portugal and Spain.
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06.09.13: John Foster

Alaska Yukon Gold Rush Era Photo Album
Accidental Mysteries for June 9, 2013 features a photo album from the Alaska Yukon gold rush era.
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05.25.13: Rob Walker

The Hyperdocumented Sunset Strip
Using Google Street View Hyperlapse to revisit Ruscha's Sunset Strip.
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05.06.13: Daniella Zalcman

New York + London: A Vision of Home
Daniella Zalcman created a series images that are part New York, part London, and collectively represent her vision of home
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03.10.13: John Foster

Kodachrome Finds New Life
Accidental Mysteries for March 10, 2013 focuses on Fred Herzog's Kodachrome slides.
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02.22.13: Rick Poynor

The Experiential Thrill of Driving in Films
A new book, Drive, shows how the car scenes in movies help us understand the experience of modernity.
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01.26.13: Rick Poynor

Herbert Spencer and The Book of Numbers
The Book of Numbers by Herbert and Mafalda Spencer was aimed at children, but its intriguing visual approach is more “photobook” than “schoolbook.”
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01.21.13: Alexandra Lange

Balthazar Korab, RIP
Tribute to architectural photographer Balthazar Korab, and a discussion of what made him different from contemporary Ezra Stoller.
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01.03.13: Rick Poynor

On My Screen: Shooting the Past
Stephen Poliakoff’s Shooting the Past, set in a fictitious photo library, is a film that could haunt you for years.
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01.02.13: Rob Walker

13 Striking Landscape Fictions
Thirteen "landscape fictions," photographs of the natural world — made distinctly unnatural.
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12.20.12: Rob Walker

What Does 'The Cover of Time' Mean?
The cover of Time Magazine may not speak with authority in the nonstop news cycle. But what does?
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11.30.12: Rick Poynor

Herbert Spencer and the Decisive Detail
In Herbert Spencer’s most memorable photographs, signs of official communication fray into visual poetry.
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11.21.12: Alexandra Lange

3rd Annual Holiday Card Review
Holiday card designs for 2012 reveal the social media preoccupations of their buyers, whether it is Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram or old-fashioned (perhaps Downton Abbey-inspired?) stationery.
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11.18.12: Rick Poynor

Robert Brownjohn: Photos at Street Level
The Victoria and Albert Museum has put 18 of Robert Brownjohn’s photographs on display for the first time.
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10.26.12: Rob Walker

System As Photographer
System as photographer, and photographer as system.
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10.21.12: John Foster

Accidental Mysteries, 10.21.12
Accidental Mysteries is an online curiosity shop of extraordinary things, mined from the depths of the online world and brought to you each week by John Foster, a writer, designer and longtime collector of self-taught art and vernacular photography. This week's focus is Time.
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10.08.12: Alexandra Lange

Having Fun at the Museum
Blocks, rocket ships, playgrounds and balls: the hidden meaning of playthings at the Museum of Modern Art.
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09.24.12: Rick Poynor

Demonstrations, Democracy and Design
After demonstrations in 2011, Barcelonas Plaça de Catalunya became a carnivalesque village of protest.
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09.10.12: Alexandra Lange

Someone Else's Shangri La
An exhibition of Doris Duke's Honolulu mansion, Shangri La, proves a "Spanish-Moorish-Persian-Indian complex" works as theater.
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09.09.12: Rick Poynor

John Stezaker: Images from a Lost World
John Stezaker’s collages, recipients of a major photography prize, achieve great resonance with limited means.
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09.02.12: Rick Poynor

It's Smart to Use a Crash Test Dummy
The image of the crash test dummy has traveled from the subcultural fringes to the pop culture mainstream.
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08.26.12: Rick Poynor

The Never-ending Struggle against Clutter
Clutter and design are inseparable as concepts because clutter is the negation of design.
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08.19.12: Rick Poynor

On My Shelf: André Breton's Nadja
The Livre de poche edition of André Breton’s Surrealist classic Nadja remains the best visual interpretation of the book.
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08.12.12: John Foster

Accidental Mysteries, 08.12.12
Accidental Mysteries is an online curiosity shop of extraordinary things, mined from the depths of the online world and brought to you each week by John Foster, a writer, designer and longtime collector of self-taught art and vernacular photography. This week's focus is Occupational Photographs.
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08.05.12: John Foster

Accidental Mysteries, 08.05.12
Accidental Mysteries is an online curiosity shop of extraordinary things, mined from the depths of the online world and brought to you each week by John Foster, a writer, designer and longtime collector of self-taught art and vernacular photography. This week's focus is Vivian Maier.
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06.27.12: Rob Walker

Observational Instruments, Observed
Peeping at the Venue project's delightful gear, and Google's Seussian Trekker
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06.10.12: John Foster

Accidental Mysteries, 06.10.12
Accidental Mysteries, a weekly cabinet of visual curiosities curated by John Foster, highlights images of design, art, architecture and ephemera brought to light by the magic of the digital age. This week's focus is smoke.
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05.23.12: Rick Poynor

Jan van Toorn: The World in a Calendar
Jan van Toorn’s provocative 1972/73 calendar for the printer Mart.Spruijt has been reprinted by a Dutch design company.
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05.21.12: Adam Harrison Levy

The Geometry of Time
Francesca Woodman's notebook, entitled Some Disordered Interior Geometries, is featured in a retrospective of her work at the Guggenheim Museum.
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05.15.12: Rick Poynor

The Strange Afterlife of Common Objects
In lstanbul shops like The Works: “Objects of Desire,” the novelist Orhan Pamuk found the artifacts for his newly opened Museum of Innocence.
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04.26.12: Rick Poynor

Studio Culture: The Materialism of Matter
Studio, print shop, dance club and store: a photographic essay on Matter's design HQ in Denver.
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04.22.12: John Foster

Accidental Mysteries, 04.22.12
Accidental Mysteries, a weekly cabinet of visual curiosities curated by John Foster, highlights images of design, art, architecture and ephemera brought to light by the magic of the digital age. This week's focus is Superheroes.
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04.19.12: Rick Poynor

Phil Sayer, Designer of Photo-Portraits
Phil Sayer’s photographic portraits for Blueprint gave the magazine great visual impact and presence.
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04.05.12: Alexandra Lange

Frank Lloyd Wright + Katniss Everdeen
On photographing architecture as sculpture and telling stories via architecture.
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03.09.12: Rick Poynor

Typographic Stories of the City Streets
Characters, a new book by Stephen Banham, investigates the stories behind Melbourne’s street signs.
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02.18.12: Rick Poynor

The Unspeakable Pleasure of Ruins
“Ruin porn,” a reductive tag that makes any photograph of ruins seem suspect, ignores the cultural history of the ruin.
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02.12.12: John Foster

Accidental Mysteries, 02.12.12
Welcome to Accidental Mysteries, a weekly cabinet of visual curiosities set aside for your perusal and enlightenment. This week's focus is Politics.
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02.08.12: Rick Poynor

On My Shelf: A Classic by Berger and Mohr
John Berger and Jean Mohr’s A Fortunate Man brilliantly fuses words and photos to examine a doctor’s life.
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02.08.12: Michelle Hauser

Pop Photographica: An Interview with Daile Kaplan
Daile Kaplan’s comprehensive collection all has one unifying trait: a photographic element that was not intended for viewing on the wall.
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01.19.12: Rick Poynor

Ernst Haas and the Color Underground
Has Ernst Haas, an early master of color photography, received the credit his ground-breaking pictures deserve?
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01.01.12: John Foster

A New American Picture: Doug Rickard and Street Photography in the Age of Google
When Google launched Street View in 2007, photogrpaher Doug Rickard had a photographic epiphany.
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12.16.11: Rick Poynor

Saul Leiter and the Typographic Fragment
In Saul Leiter's color photographs, the fragment is infinitely more mysterious and suggestive than the whole.
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11.17.11: Rick Poynor

The Infinite Warehouse of Images
The more photos we collectively produce, the more ruthless we need to be about bestowing our attention.
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09.29.11: Rick Poynor

Should We Look at Corrosive Images?
What do violent photographs of war do to us as viewers?
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09.11.11: Adam Harrison Levy

The Falling Man: An Interview with Henry Singer
An interview with Henry Singer produceder and director The Falling Man, a 90 minute documentary.
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08.17.11: Rick Poynor

Funerary Portraits: Snapshots in Stone
The portrait sculptures in the Cimetière du château in Nice resuscitate their subjects with a frequently startling vividness.
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07.27.11: Rick Poynor

Andrzej Klimowski: Transmitting the Image
Andrzej Klimowski, author of a new book, On Illustration, has used the medium to create a compelling alternative reality.
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07.21.11: Rick Poynor

J.G. Ballard's Terminal Documents
A speculative visual interpretation of one of the surreal image lists in J.G. Ballard’s experimental novel The Atrocity Exhibition.
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06.22.11: Rick Poynor

On the Threshold of Sebald's Room
Daniel Blaufuks is haunted by a picture of an office in W.G. Sebald’s Austerlitz. Where did it come from and what does it show?
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06.06.11: Rick Poynor

Is That a Gun in Your Pocket?
A DVD cover for the classic film noir Kiss Me Deadly uses the blindingly obvious symbol that just keeps on giving.
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06.01.11: Rick Poynor

On My Shelf: Stefan Lorant's Lilliput
Stefan Lorant’s use of photos in pairs could be wry, funny, bizarre, whimsical, satirical and not always kind.
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05.23.11: Adam Harrison Levy

Hiroshima: The Lost Photographs
Close to a decade ago, in Watertown, Massachusetts, a man was walking his dog. Amidst the garbage he caught sight of a battered suitcase: inside he found photographs of a bombed out Hiroshima. A unique slideshow of 100 photographs.
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04.21.11: Rick Poynor

Wim Wenders' Strange and Quiet Places
The massive photographs in film director Wim Wenders’ new exhibition work best when they serve his painterly eye.
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03.04.11: Rick Poynor

The Secret History of the Edgelands
These transitional zones, places of “possibility, mystery and beauty,” can be found anywhere that urban development meets open land.
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02.17.11: Mark Lamster

Cities from the Sky
A new exhibition of urban photographs by Sze Tsung Leong.
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02.15.11: Rick Poynor

Solitude in Dark Trees
Was this structure the idle amusement of some loggers, or an art piece by someone at the academy nearby? Gingerly testing each rung, I climbed up into it.
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01.27.11: Rick Poynor

On My Shelf: Nairn's London
Inside the architecture critic Ian Nairn’s classic, idiosyncratic guide to London’s buildings and spaces.
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01.23.11: Rick Poynor

Discovered by Chance in a Paris Arcade
What better way to pass a couple of spare hours in Paris than to visit the covered arcades that were, for the Surrealists, some of the best places to encounter the marvellous?
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12.21.10: Rick Poynor

W.G. Sebald: Writing with Pictures
How do the great German writer's notoriously tricky visual fictions compare with reality?
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11.29.10: Nancy Levinson

Art Talks
Adam Lowe and Peter Greenaway at the Park Avenue Armory in New York City; Justin Partyka and Sir Terry Farrell at Eleven Spitalfields in London,
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11.26.10: Jessica Helfand

Pretty Pictures, Bad Judgment
If a picture's worth a thousand words, a publically broadcast picture is amplified, multiplied and cast out into a world where it can go anywhere.
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11.24.10: Michelle Hauser

A Fluid and Expressive Medium: Interview with Robert E. Jackson
In recent years, a new breed of photographer has emerged: the camera-less Photographer. This new generation — many of whom self-identify as collectors — has reinvented the process once again. Michelle Hauser interviews Robert E. Jackson, one of the country's most prolific collector of vernacular photography, who lays claim to a breadth and depth of material rivaled by few if any, in this emerging field.
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11.17.10: John Thackara

Look — Or Connect?
In a photography and book project called Shelter Henk Wildschut documents found shelters. Perhaps we should not judge these images by what they make *us* feel, but by which they cause to connect, with the people they portray.
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09.22.10: Luc Sante

Circus: The Photographs of Frederick W. Glasier
Rediscovered: Frederick W. Glasier. Glasier made extraordinary photographs of the American circus during its heyday.
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08.26.10: Alexandra Lange

The War at Home
My brother Jeremy M. Lange is a photojournalist who works for the Independent, in Durham, NC, where he has been able to photograph a number of funerals, with family permission every time.
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07.22.10: Mark Lamster

The Constructed Landscapes of Chris Berg
With digital imaging technology so advanced and widely accessible, the photo-collage has reached a level of almost baroque absurdity.
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06.25.10: Alexandra Lange

THE Bite THATS Rite
A photograph by John Szarkowski from Looking After Louis Sullivan at the Art Institute.
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05.03.10: Michelle Hauser

The Leisure of Looking: A Pedestrian View in a High-Speed Era
As trolleys replaced the horse drawn carriage, only to be overtaken by the streetcar and the automobile, Booth Tarkington observes that “the faster people were carried, the less time they had to spare.”
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04.22.10: Michael Bierut

The Bones of Francois Robert
For the past three years, Francois Robert has spent hundreds of hours arranging the bones of a single human skeleton into a series of striking iconic shapes, creating a photographic series he calls "Stop the Violence." The results are beautiful and haunting.
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03.31.10: Alexandra Lange

In the Family
Beautiful work by my brother, Jeremy M. Lange, in the New York Times Sunday.
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03.29.10: Alexandra Lange

Reciting Modernist Architects
She hated it when Daddy made her recite modernist architects.
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02.28.10: Mark Lamster

Double Vision: Did David Burdeny Copy Sze Tsung Leong?
When does inspiration cross over the line into plagiarism and copyright infringement?
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02.23.10: Adam Harrison Levy

Death’s Bloom
From 1913 to 1971 five thousand one hundred and twenty one mentally ill patients were cremated. Their remains were sealed in copper canisters. In 2000 David Maisel photographed them.
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02.02.10: Alexandra Lange

All Rubble Is Not Alike
I watched Manufactured Landscapes in the weeks before Christmas and it was just too depressing to post about in the run-up to gift day.
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01.24.10: Alexandra Lange

Pay No Attention to Me
In one of those strange topical coincidences, this Sunday’s Arts & Leisure section has a profile of Iwan Baan, a Dutch architectural photographer who is the post-Stoller-Shulman-Molitor savior of architectural photography.
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01.21.10: Alexandra Lange

Buildings That Aren't There
Photography needs to prove itself again as an interpretive medium for architecture somewhere this side of art.
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12.10.09: Mark Lamster

The City in Pictures
Every great city is unique. Each has its own special character, a certain cosmopolitan energy that is its own, the product of its people, its history, its culture, its physical form.
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11.03.09: Felice C. Frankel, George M. Whitesides

No Small Matter: Science on the Nanoscale
A slideshow of images from the book, No Small Matter: Science on the Nanoscale.
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10.07.09: Owen Edwards

Irving Penn, 1917-2009
Irving Penn, who died on October 7th at the age of 92, marks the end of the great age of glamour in magazines, a remarkable period when brilliant photographers who happened to make their livings in fashion and advertising were finally recognized for the artistry of their eyes.
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07.31.09: Mark Lamster

Ballparks Redux
Metropolis has posted a slideshow of the outtake photographs by Sean Hemmerle for my story on New York's ballparks.
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07.29.09: Owen Edwards

Remembering Julius Shulman
Looking back on an afternoon of chocolate, pastrami, and Scotch with modern architecture's iconic photographer.
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07.24.09: Mark Lamster

The Photographs of Sze Tsung Leong
A few weeks ago I had the great pleasure of touring Antwerp with the photographer Sze Tsung Leong, who was there working on an ongoing project documenting cityscapes.
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07.20.09: Mark Lamster

Ezra & Julius
Julius Shulman and Ezra Stoller were the alfa and omega of American architectural photography.
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07.15.09: Mark Lamster

Sex or Biking?
A set of Tour de France photographs by Brent Humphreys indicates the short visual distance between agony and ecstasy.
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07.01.09: Adam Harrison Levy

Cars R Us
Andrew Bush’s photographs, featured in his new book Drive, remind us just how intimate we have become with our cars.
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06.16.09: Mark Lamster

European Holiday
I'm off to the Continent, which is a good excuse to dip into the family photo archive for a few reminders of a time when European travel was a bit more of a novelty.
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06.09.09: Adam Harrison Levy

The Photographs of Manuel Bromberg
There are other photographs taken on the beaches of Normandy that are almost entirely unknown. Never seen before, we present the photographs of Manuel Bromberg, Normandy, 1944.
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06.04.09: Ars Libri Ltd

Walter Dexel Collection
This remarkable collection of graphic design is from the German Constructivist artist and typographer Walter Dexel.
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04.15.09: Ken Worpole

Tidal Pools: Photographs by Jason Orton
Tidal pools were once common along the coast of Britain, particularly at seaside holiday resorts. Although many such pools have been destroyed or exist as ruins, others are being revived thanks to the energies of lido enthusiasts. This photo essay captures their beauty, even in decay.
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03.31.09: Adam Harrison Levy

William Klein: Contacts
William Klein made a rare appearance in New York recently to promote his latest book, Contacts. American by birth, he has lived most of his life in Paris. He is now 81.
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01.19.09: William Drenttel

Polling Place Photo Project
To commemorate the inauguration of President Barack Obama, please enjoy this short film by Andrew Sloat inspired by Polling Place Photo Project.
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12.20.08: Mark Lamster

How the West Was Lost
My reviews of two new photography books.
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11.05.08: William Drenttel

The Obama Victory
The Polling Place Photo Project, staged in partnership with The New York Times and AIGA, seeks to visualize democracy in action with photographs by citizens engaged with voting at the polls. Yesterday was Barrack Obama's day, and these photographs are dedicated to him.
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10.12.08: William Drenttel

Polling Place Photo Project on November 4, 2008
We are pleased to announce that the Polling Place Photo Project is continuing into the 2008 presidential election, supported by a partnership of The New York Times, AIGA and Design Observer.
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07.08.08: Andrew Flamm & Michelle Hauser

Folk Photos
The onset of the digital revolution has made the period for using film finite. Processed prints are becoming obsolete. With the immediate option of discarding an unintended image, a rich library of our unselfconscious selves will no longer be recorded. But it lives here, in these beautiful, poetic and tactile objects.
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03.11.08: Michael Bierut

Would It Kill You To Smile?
Thoughts on the enduring influence of bershon, "how you feel when you’re 13 and your parents make you wear a Christmas sweatshirt and then pose for a family picture."
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02.17.08: Rick Poynor

Lost America: The Flamingo Motor Hotel
I found this old photo in a box at the back of my attic. It shows a motel in Flagstaff, Arizona where I stayed for a couple of nights in May 1978. I was 20, it was my first visit to the US, and for three weeks I had been touring around on Greyhound buses.
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02.04.08: William Drenttel

Polling Place Photo Project on Super Tuesday
Voting on Tuesday, February 5, in the U.S. presidential primaries? We hope you will contribute a photograph to the Polling Place Photo Project.
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01.12.08: William Drenttel

Polling Place Photo Project 2008
We are pleased to announce that the Polling Place Photo Project is continuing into the 2008 presidential primaries and election, supported by a new partnership of The New York Times, AIGA and Design Observer.
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11.27.07: Tom Vanderbilt

Discipline and Design
On a sweeping and fully realized scale, Richard Ross's photographs probes the disciplinary dynamics in the cruel hidden places you would expect them, and in the banal everyday places you might not have even noticed them.
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09.28.07: William Drenttel

Burma (Myanmar), 1989
This slideshow of photographs from 1989 is offered in solidarity with the people of Burma — as they again confront one of the most brutal regimes in the world.
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09.12.07: Lorraine Wild

Wallace Berman's Photographs
In 1961, Wallace Berman, a California-based artist, publisher of the proto-zine, Semina, gallerist, and photographer, too a picture of his landlady while he was living in Larkspur, California. We see her (the landlady!) sprawled across a bed dressed in a bra and skirt, casually holding a pistol...
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04.22.07: Jessica Helfand

The New Manifest Destiny
When does a picture solidify a news story, and when does it merely sensationalize it? Decisions about words and pictures are made by editors and publishers, designers and photographers — but they are consumed by a public fully capable of an entire range of emotional responses. After this week's events at Virginia Tech, words and pictures do a poor job of communicating outrage and pain. And no amount of compositional ingenuity can reverse what happened.
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04.19.07: Jesse Nivens

In Search of Stock(y) Photography
That's right: in the alternate universe of stock photography, attactive people outnumber fat people 84 to one. As a culture, have we taken the idea of "overweight" and completely blocked it out?
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12.23.06: William Drenttel

Voting & Religion in America: A Slideshow
The reality, contrary to my perception, is that millions vote in religious settings all across the country, casting this important act of citizenry in distinctly non-secular environments.
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09.19.06: DJ Stout

Remembering Ann Richards
To create the famous Texas Monthly cover of Governor Ann Richards astride a Harley, art director DJ Stout used a body double. "For many years, I would run into Ann Richards at my favorite Mexican food lunch spot in downtown Austin and she would always thank me for giving her such a 'sexy body.'"
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09.16.06: Kenneth Krushel

The Face Of Oblivion
Faces on supermarket packaging conform to a research-based "psychographic" that hasn't essentially changed in more than two decades. What is it about our self-image that identifies, at least on a consumer basis, with such fictional, even farcical lifestyles?
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06.14.06: Michael Bierut

My Phone Call to Arnold Newman
Michael Bierut remembers a 25-year-old phone conversation with the late photographer Arnold Newman.
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05.18.06: Julie Lasky

The Photography of Mark Robbins
Mark Robbins' Households is a collection of portraits in which the sitters are sometimes sitting rooms (or kitchens or bedrooms), and the people are polished, draped, and arrayed like furniture. Composed to resemble architectural plans or elevations — or in some cases the triptychs of medieval altarpieces — the images represent home dwellers and their environments. Flesh, bone, brick, stone, contoured torsos, and varnished chairs assume equal status. The message is simple: You may not be what you eat, but you most certainly are where you live.
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02.12.06: Michael Bierut

Design by Committee
"Design by committee" is usually thought to be a bad thing, but it has produced one great piece of architecture, the United Nations Headquarters Building.
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01.05.06: Julie Lasky

Edward Hopper, Village Person
My friend opened the door to a minimally furnished skylit room. It had a pot-bellied stove, a painter's easel, and photos framed on the wall of a grim man with long legs. The room was the studio of Edward Hopper. (Slide show by Duane Michals.)
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08.05.05: William Drenttel

Small Town Meetings
Zoning regulations are how a town designs its future. They determine what kind of development is encouraged, and what kind is discouraged. In Meetings, Paul Shambroom visited 150 local government meetings in 32 states. The photographs are remarkable in presenting the physical details by which towns gather to determine how they live.
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05.05.05: Rick Poynor

Getting Louder: Chinese Design on the March
The “Get it Lounder” design exhibition in Shenzhen, billed as the first of its kind in China, reflected the lifestyle aspirations of its participants. Will Chinese design be able to confront social reality in more overtly critical ways?
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04.21.05: Jessica Helfand

Extremely Young and Incredibly Everywhere: The Public Art of Jonathan Safran Foer
Jonathan Safran Foer's emergent body of work includes film and video, public art installations, theatrical collaboration, expressive typography, and a fairly prolific jumpstart as a writer. Cumulatively, all of his projects — which range from collecting empty pages of famous writers, to constructing parabolas in a public park, to collecting anonymous self-portraits — seem to look for ways to formally address time and space and the human condition.
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04.05.05: Rick Poynor

Wisconsin Death Trip: A Psychic History
Michael Lesy’s book Wisconsin Death Trip documented awful events in Black River Falls, Wisconsin, using a town photographer’s pictures. Years later, it remains a spellbinding piece of literary and photographic alchemy.
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03.17.05: Jessica Helfand

Scrapbooking: The New Paste-Up
"Craft-born embellishments," note one supplier of scrapbooking products, "are penetrating an unexpected market: graphic design."
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02.23.05: William Drenttel

Stop The Plant: The Failure of Rendering
There is no single rendering ominous enough to create public fear; no image so compelling as to create political momentum; and no symbol so memorable as to unite the opposition. Whether through artistic renderings or compelling information design, no one has made a visual case against these plants that is wholly effective. This is, I believe, a fundamental failure of design.
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02.19.05: Kenneth Krushel

The Gates
Much has been written about Christo and Jeanne-Claude's "Gates" project in Central Park in New York City. In the past few days, though, we have received two further reports on this project which we want to share with our readers: an essay by Ken Krushel and a photographic portfolio by Adam Bartos.
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02.18.05: Jessica Helfand

My Friend Flickr
Flickr is a digital photo sharing website and web services suite that was developed by Ludicorp, a Vancouver, Canada company founded in 2002. It's a utopian oddity — a culture enabled by a technology that in turn enables a culture — and it's a brilliant example of socially networked software because it's free, its easy, and it makes sense.
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01.08.05: Michael Bierut

Robert Polidori's Peripheral Vision
Robert Polidori's photographs depict contemporary architecture in the context of a decidedly imperfect world.
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11.13.04: Michael Bierut

First Person Shooter
News photographs from Iraq are eerily reminiscent of video game images.
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11.01.04: Michael Bierut

Colorama
Grand Central Terminal's enormous Colorama displays by Kodak documented a suburban fantasy world for millions of commuters.
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08.05.04: Jessica Helfand

An Instrument of Sufficiently Lucid Cogitation
The legendary French photojournalist Henri Cartier-Bresson, who died on Tuesday at his home in the South of France, always carried a sketchbook with him. Today's obituary in The New York Times alleges that he described drawing as meditative, while photography was intuitive: though certainly both activities might have been informed by a relentless need to observe and in a sense, preserve the world around him.
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02.24.04: Jessica Helfand

The Crisis of Intent

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01.11.04: Rick Poynor

Stephen Gill: Behind the Billboard
Designers are battlers against entropy: a vital task, but taking the long view, often a doomed, quixotic mission. Stephen Gill’s photographs, showing the disorderly zones behind billboards, offer a reality check.
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11.30.03: Rob Walker

Digital Tools for Making Brilliant Mistakes
The many options for digitally antiquing your 21st-century self-expression.
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