In Photography After Frank, former New York Times writer and picture editor Philip Gefter narrates the tale of contemporary photography, beginning at the pivotal moment when Robert Frank commenced his seminal works of the 1950s. Along the way, he connects the dots of photography's evolution into what it is today, forging links between its episodes to reveal unsuspected leaps. Gefter takes Frank's The Americans as a decisive challenge to photographic objectivity, with its grainy, off-hand-seeming spontaneity and its documentation of life beyond the picket fence. Thus viewed, The Americans provides Gefter with a bridge to the phenomenon of the staged document and Postmodernism's further challenge to image fidelity. Other areas of discussion include photojournalism, the recent diversity of portraiture styles, the influence of private and corporate collections on curatorial decisions and how the market shapes art making. Throughout Photography After Frank, Gefter deftly demonstrates Frank's legacy in the work of dozens of important individual artists who followed in his wake, from Lee Friedlander and Nan Goldin to Stephen Shore and Ryan McGinley. The book includes texts written exclusively for this publication as well as essays drawn from Gefter's critical writings, reviews and even obituaries. Photography After Frank offers a page-turning approach to a subject that will appeal to students and art world aficionados alike.
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Philip Gefter was on staff at The New York Times for over fifteen years, where he wrote regularly about photography. His essays are collected in the book Photography After Frank (2009). His biography of Sam Wagstaff, Wagstaff: Before and After Mapplethorpe, was published in 2014 (Liveright). He is currently at work on a biography of Richard Avedon. He lives in New York City.Review:
"In accesible prose, Gefter's short essays manage to trace Frank's influence from the likes of Lee Friedlander and Nan Goldin to Stephen Shore and Ryan McGinley. All along the way, he offers readers brief snippets -- many of the pieces have been taken from the Times or Aperture magazine, so they're no more than four pages -- on individual photographers and subjects like photo-realism or the market's effect on art-making." -- Valerie Palmer --Planet blog
"Insightful and intelligent, Photography after Frank is a perceptive and journalistic approach to certain contemporary issues in photography." --HotShoe Magazine
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