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Faces of the 20s. Portfolio of 12 signed prints
1981. Signed. ABBOTT, Berenice.Faces of the 20s. Portfolio of 12 Signed Gelatin Silver Prints.New York: Parasol, 1981.Rare limited portfolio of 12 large gelatin silver prints, number 35 of only 60 issued, each impressive print signed and numbered in pencil on the matt by Abbott—?"the dean of American photographers?"—featuring her legendary 1920s portraits of James Joyce, Eugène Atget, Janet Flanner, Jean Cocteau, Edna St. Vincent Millay and others, in the original clamshell box.This rare portfolio, one of only 60 issued, contains 12 large gelatin silver prints, each boldly signed on the matt by Berenice Abbott, ?"the dean of American photographers?" (New York Times). With these defining images Abbott illuminates the particular brilliance of major 20th-century figures such as James Joyce, Eugène Atget, Janet Flanner and Jean Cocteau. Abbott began her career in Paris, when in 1923 she took a job as darkroom assistant to Man Ray. Impressed by her skill he ?"offered Abbott his studio to make her own portraits, and soon her reputation rivaled his. Their styles differed— Man Ray excelled at stylization and abstract composition, while Abbott sought naturalness and spontaneity— and many sitters who hired Man Ray wished to pose for Abbott as well. ?'To be ?'done?' by Man Ray or Berenice Abbott meant you rated as somebody,?' remarked Sylvia Beach, proprietor of the avant-garde bookstore Shakespeare & Co. In 1926, after a well-received one-person exhibition at a small Parisian art gallery, Abbott opened her own studio… Playing an important role in the lively critical debate on photography and modern art, she forged her own artistic philosophy.?" That approach was further realized with Abbott?'s return to New York in 1929 and a series of cityscapes inspired by the Parisian images of Atget, a major ?"precursor of modern photography?" whose influence was assured through Abbott?'s efforts (Yochelson, Fantastic Passion for New York). This collection of Faces of the 20s is especially significant in its inclusion of Abbott?'s 1925 portrait of Atget, taken shortly before his death, and her iconic 1928 portrait of Joyce, seen in a pensive yet elegant pose—images that define both the genius and humanity of these two legendary artists. Also contained in this impressive portfolio are Abbott?'s portraits of her close friend André Gide, of Edna St. Vincent Millay framed by velvety blackness, a portrait of Janet Flanner in a whimsical top hat and one of her partner Solita Solano, a portrait of Jean Cocteau gesturing at the camera and an evocative print of his hands at rest, as well as Abbott?'s portraits of Princess Eugène Murat, drummer Buddy Gilmore, Mrs. Raymond Massey, and Princess Marthe Bibesco, a writer and close friend of Gide and Cocteau. These exceptional signed prints genuinely express Abbott?'s firmly expressed belief that ?"Photography helps people to see?" (New York Times).An impressive suite of 12 signed prints in fine condition.
      [Bookseller: Bauman Rare Books]
Last Found On: 2015-10-11           Check availability:      Biblio    

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