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Friday, 20 June 2008


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Man, that Herzog is absolute killer stuff. I immediately bought the book based on the two images you showed, then found a gallery of numerous photos of his and felt even better about the purchase!


Thanks much for the tip.

Robert Noble,
A number of the pictures in the book are in that online gallery, but I think they look a lot better in the book. I was ambivalent about passing along the link because they just don't have the same feel as small JPEGs. But you can get a good idea of the subject matter.

Mike J.

I see Great Photo Books You Can Buy New: Part I
back in the May archives, but cannot find a Part II ?
Not that I really need to know as it will only cost me more $$$,
but where ?

Was there a great photo books part II? I can't seem to find one.

Mike- A notable absence from your lists so far is the work of Elliott Erwitt. I thought of this the other day when I was at Borders and saw that they have his book "Snaps" available on the shelf in paperback. Checking Amazon I see that "Snaps" is available for shipment now, and "Personal Best" (a truly amazing and well printed collection) is still in print but back ordered. Surely, Erwitt is worthy of consideration.

One of my favorite books that's still easily available is the William Christenberry monograph published in 2006 by Aperture. Christenberry is under-appreciated in general, as far as I can tell.

Ben and Andrea,
Sorry! I've added a "note" with links to the post regarding parts I and II.

Mike J.

Alas, neither Erwitt title is available new at the moment--new availability being the condition for inclusion on these lists. It may be that "Personal Best" is not actually out of print yet, but the "Temporarily Out of Stock" notice on Amazon is often an interim step to "Unavailable."

Although I loved "Snaps" (and love Erwitt), I'm not entirely certain I would put "Personal Best" on a short list of recommendations--see the first comment at the Amazon site (by Des Hill, London) for the reasons why. Not saying I wouldn't, just that I'd have to spend more time with the book.

Mike J.

Wow - Fred Herzog's book is currently (1:30am EST, June 21st) the best selling book on amazon.ca

I'll need to place my order soon...


i want that Herzog book!

Can you tell me what size and weight it is - approximately, because I have the chance that someone takes one copy with her coming from Philadelphia to Vienna in July. But I have already ordered a few things, so she is afraid now about weight...

btw, thanks for this wonderful recommendations.

And funny enough, the picutres I saw in the online gallery encourage me a lot, because I really like that style and found myself shooting like this especially on travels (that doesn't mean I think my photos are the same level, just the same kind, somehow). Also like to do this at home, even if I find that part harder, because at home I see differently. A lot of people will know this phenomenon.
But then I heard a lot of voices and used to think that only "street" photography is really cool, a lot of does and doen'ts and so on.
Fortunately I am slowly getting back to a more balanced approach, more me, if you like.

Not at least due to such posts and the like here on TOP. Great! Don't listen to too much voices ;-))

best always

Just started getting back into photography and I've been loving these book lists, been buying quite a few from them. My favourite purchase (from a review on this site, though not one of the lists) has been David Plowden's "Vanishing Point", I must have read it through 4 or 5 times since I bought it. I would thoroughly recommend it to anyone into his sort of photography.

Just bought the Fred Herzog one, looks wonderful, can't wait.

Why not recommend the private books?

Strongly recommend the photographer Mr Fan HO who is a great photographer in Hong Kong.
Also make some erotic movies in Hong Kong.

Now he is living in San Jose, CA




It's 9 x 11 x 1/2 inches, and paperback so not very heavy.

Mike J.

"Churches ad hoc: a divine comedy" is still
available at Amazon.com

Am I the only one who thinks that, in our respective capitalist societies, the very short print runs, which quickly lead, as you point out, to high "used' prices, is an odd phenomena ? If you have an artist whose previous runs have sold through quickly and generated a used market wouldn't you expect to see an increase in the run next time?
You are promoting a list obsession which is depleting my bank balance so in retaliation I append another list. This is from the UK National Media Museum, home earlier this year to the magnificent HCB "Scrapbook" show. I know you will recognise some classics here but some titles may prove to be elusive enough to exercise some collectors ingenuity.

Art and Photography bibliography

I have to agree with you and Des Hill regarding the "Personal Best" book from Elliott Erwitt (and agree with your enthusiasm for Erwitt's photos in general). The book is very poorly designed. On the other hand, I had the chance to pick it up for $130.00 Canadian and passed. Seeing it listed for over four hundred bucks American on Amazon makes me think, "Oops". Why would anybody pay that much for a bad book, no matter how good the photographer?

Hi Mike,

about the Gursky book: I happen to be quite fond about Gursky and really like his work, but then again I am German so I might be biased.

However, I happened to see his recent exhibition in Munich and my wife bought me the catalogue, which according to your description (cover and all) seems to be the same book. This is still available at Amazon Germany (http://www.amazon.de/Andreas-Gursky-Katalog-Ausstellung-M%C3%BCnchen/dp/3936859507/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1214246535&sr=8-3) in contrast to your recommendation that Amazon US now lists "out of stock". Maybe you know if it is really the same book and if so maybe some readers like to try Amazon Germany (I don't know if the prices are attractive for US customers, but you very probably have lots of readers in Germany (like me) as well).


Christian Ahn

I wholeheartedly agree with whale.tw above -- Modernbook's Fan Ho collection "Hong Kong Yesterday" is beautiful. I wandered past quite by accident when in Palo Alto on a business trip and bought it straight away after flipping through it briefly. Beautifully printed, evocative photographs of the HK of years ago.

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