cover image Singular Images: Essays on Remarkable Photographs

Singular Images: Essays on Remarkable Photographs

. Aperture, $19.95 (127pp) ISBN 978-1-59711-017-4

These 11 thoughtful essays (each accompanied by a reproduction of the work being discussed) provide an in-depth look at important photographs spanning the history of the medium. The contributors, all major players in the world of contemporary photography, construct their essays from micro and macro perspectives, presenting key specifics and details of each photograph alongside consideration of the place these images hold in the history of the discipline. From the first photo ever taken, Latticed Window (with the Camera Obscura), August 1835, by William Henry Fox Talbot, to a recent work created using a blend of traditional photography and digital imaging (A view from an Apartment by Jeff Wall), the essays render photography as a hyper-accurate recording device, a mirror held up to our own social conventions and attitudes, an agent for social change and a method for commenting on culture and history. Traditional-minded readers may be put off by the language of ""photographic desire,"" or ""precariousness of pictorial structure,"" but those sympathetic to postmodern approaches to art will no doubt find this work of great interest, as will those interested in photography in general.