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Monograph: Carlo Valsecchi Lumen

Industrial architecture, agro-industrial farmland, airports and urban landscapes are all subjects of the Italian photographer Carlo Valsecchi. He works with a extremely soft palette and nuanced chromatic scale, the images are painterly in its sensibility. By shooting long, slightly overexposed images Valsecchi manages to capture natural light bathing a subject not known for its intrinsic beauty. The compositions are considered and carefully composed, his goal is to make visible the dynamic process linking architecture, machinery and product.
Much of his work is clearly within the strong tradition of the industrial landscape developed by the German school, Bernd & Hilla Becher and Andreas Gursky, while others have noted similarities withe the Canadian photographer Edward Burtynsky. The book follows an exhibition of his large-format photographs at Musée de l’Elysée in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Carlo Valsecchi: Lumen, Edited by Musée de l’Elysée, Lausanne, William A. Ewing, Nathalie Herschdorfer, Publisher: Hatje Cantz English, French, Pages 192, 134 color, hardcover, 29.7 x 27.6 cm, ISBN: 9783775724104
Buy it here: Amazon

Books: Edgar Martins: Topologies

With artful composition and controlled framing—but no digital manipulation—Edgar Martins creates sublimely beautiful views of often un-beautiful sites. Minimalist nighttime beaches, forests ravaged by fires, and Iceland’s stark terrain have all served as subjects for his large-scale color photographs. He also explores the unexpected impact of modernism on the landscape, including startlingly graphic airport runways and colorful highway barriers that, at first glance, read like abstract murals.

Certain themes recur throughout Martins’s work. A sense of place and alienation from it. A sense of mystery—vividly embodied in scenes such as a woman with a bouquet of balloons on a deserted shore. And a sense that something unsettling has just happened or is about to happen—a fire, an accident, a close encounter with some unspecified danger. As John Beardsley notes, “Some images are what we habitually expect photography to be—evidence of the world as we think we know it—while others obscure their subjects through an illusionism that borders on magic.”

Edgar Martins: Topologies, Photography by Edgar Martins, Hardcover with jacket,
11″ x 9.25″, 136 pages

Buy it here: Amazon

Books: The U.N. Building

When it was completed in 1952 along New York’s East River, The United Nations Building stood as a symbol of world humanitarianism, a beacon of unity after the Second World War. More than 50 years on, the 39-story building is regarded as one of the pinnacles of mid-century modernism. Its magnificent public spaces and assembly halls, as well as its impressive collection of art by Chagall, Henry Moore and many others make it one of the most visited sites in New York.
On the celebration of the United Nations’ 60th anniversary, and before a long period of renovation, this book presents a portrait of this fascinating building. Specially commissioned photography and an illuminating text bring alive the the spaces which have played host to the historic aspirations, speeches, debates and gatherings that have been central to the world’s development since 1945.

“Considered and well-produced … an intelligently observed photo-essay of a working environment”
– The Architects’ Journal

“No one had ever conceived of building a mirror on this scale before, and perhaps no one could guess what an endless series of pictures that mirror would reveal.”
– Lewis Mumford

The U.N. Building, with an essay by Aaron Betsky, Photographs by Ben Murphy, Foreword by Kofi A. Annan
Buy it here: Amazon

Bunkers: Ruins of War in a New American Landscape

Built in apprehension of the enemy that never came, Alex Fradkin has photographed the architecture of war along the coastal landscape of the San Francisco Bay area. The earliest bunkers date from the Mexican–American War all the way up to the Cold War. A personal photographic project which took Fradkin eight years to complete will be published by Chronicle Books in the Fall of 2009.

Bunkers: Ruins of War in a New American Landscape, by Alex Fradkin

Books: Julius Shulman, Modernism Rediscovered

The buildings burned in our memories, which to us represent the spirit of fifties and sixties architectural design, were those whose pictures were widely published in magazines and books; but what about those that got lost in the process, hardly or never appearing in publication?

The exchange of visual information is crucial to the development, evolution, and promotion of architectural movements. If a building is not widely seen, its photograph rarely or never published, it simply does not enter into architectural discourse. Many buildings photographed by Julius Shulman suffered this fate, their images falling into oblivion.
The abandoned files of Julius Shulman show us another side of Modernism that has stayed quiet for so many years. Bringing together nearly 250 forgotten masterpieces, Modernism Rediscovered pays tribute to these lesser known yet outstanding contributions to the modern architectural movement. It’s like sneaking into a private history, into homes that have rarely been seen and hardly appreciated as of yet.

A resident of Los Angeles since 1920, Julius Shulman has been documenting modernist architecture in Southern California and across the globe for nearly eight decades. His images of Pierre Koenig’s Case Study House No. 22 (1960) in Los Angeles and Richard J. Neutra’s Kaufmann House (1947) in Palm Springs are among the most recognizable and iconic architectural photographs of the 20th century.

Julius Shulman, Modernism Rediscovered, 416 pages, Edited by Peter Gössel.
Buy it Here: Amazon

Books: beautyLIGHT by Matthew Rolston

beautyLIGHT is a new book published in collaboration with Remy Martin Louis XIII who are supporting visionary artists from the world of art, design, photography and architecture.
The book showcases some of Matthew Rolston’s best photographs from the past 20 years including those of Selma Hayek, Charlize Theron, Bjork, Bob Dylan, Christina Ricci and Julianne Moore.
Matthew Rolston was discovered by Andy Warhol at an early age to shoot for Interview Magazine, and has shot iconic covers for numerous publications including Rolling Stone and Harper’s Bazaar.

beautyLIGHT, published by teNeues, Available in two formats: Standard book, $75, Collectors’ Edition$2500 (limited to 600 copies with a signed print)

Books: New York—The Magnum Edition

Magnum will launch a towering book: New York—The Magnum Edition, on november 5th with an event at the National Arts Club in New York City.
Published by Gloria, this giant of a book, weighing in at 12Kg is book as architecture: it comes with its own base and skeletal frame. 1500 images, 756 pages, and features the most iconic images of New York by some of the most respected photographers of our times – including 28 Magnum photographers. The editon includes a silver gelatin print by Leonard Freed (estate stamped). There are only 25 of prints available worldwide.

New York contains thirty three chapters covering every aspect of the New York story, including history, architecture, design, art, fashion, music, film, television, dance, sport and 9/11.
28 Magnum photographers have work featured in the book. Some of the photographers featured in this book include Berenice Abbott, Diane Arbus, Eve Arnold, David Bailey, Henri Cartier- Bresson, Bruce Davidson, Patrick Demarchelier, Elliott Erwitt, Philippe Halsman, Evelyn Hofer, Annie Leibovitz, Steve McCurry, Helmut Newton, Norman Parkinson, Jacob Riis, Jerry Schatzberg, Edward Steichen, Dennis Stock and Weegee among others.
Chapters have been written by the cream of New York literary talent including Ric Burns, Anthony DeCurtis, Don DeLillo, Paul Goldberger, David Halberstam, Pete Hamill, Michael Kantor, David Remnick, James Sanders, Gay Talese, John Updike, EB White, Colson Whitehead and Tom Wolfe.

New York—The Magnum Edition, $4000, Limited Edition of 25, Published by Gloria, for Magnum

Books: Andreas Gefeller: SOMA

In his disconcerting photographs, the Düsseldorf-based artist Andreas Gefeller has turned holiday sites on Gran Canaria into bleak Utopian backdrops. Although taken in a conventional, analogue way, the pictures look as if they have been digitally altered. In an age of cyberspace where virtuality and reality permeate each other, this work raises a number of questions: How real is reality and how true are its representations?

Andreas Gefeller: SOMA
Buy it here: Amazon

Books: Typologies by Bernd and Hilla Becher

As both artists and teachers, Bernd and Hilla Becher are among the most important figures in postwar German photography. For the last thirty years, the artists have examined the dilapidated industrial architecture of Europe and North America, from water towers and blast furnaces to the surrounding workers’ houses. Photographing against a blank sky and without any pictorial tricks or effects, the Bechers treat these forgotten structures as the exotic specimens of a long-dead species. Best known for their “typologies”— grids of black-and-white photographs of variant examples of a single type of industrial structure.

Typologies of Industrial Buildings, by Bernd and Hilla Becher
Buy it here: Amazon

Books: Andrew Zuckerman: Creature

Andrew Zuckerman writes in his second book Creature, published by Chronicle Books “…when a subject is stripped from its context, its behavior, rather than its purpose, is all that remains.”
For the last five years, Zuckerman has been photographing a variety of creatures such as beetles, goldfish, doves, and elephants in a seamless, shadowless void. The photographs give no clue to habitat, habits, or even size: The animals Zuckerman portrays are pure form and presence, both exemplars and unique individuals. But unlike museum exhibits, these creatures are in motion. With the same high-speed technology he uses to capture a splash of liquid, Zuckerman freezes an instant in each animal’s life. The result is a portrait of motion without a trace of movement—no blur, no ambiguity.

Andrew Zuckerman: Creature, Buy it here: Amazon

Editor's Picks

Bell Side Table
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