Friday, February 17, 2012

Robert Frank: The Lost Photos Found in NY Times Archive

Robert Frank changed we how view photography and how we view photographs with his masterpiece, "The Americans,” The Americans is a series of black and white photos he took while on a a cross-country road trip in 1955–56. Then in 1958 The New York Times commissioned him to do a series of photos that showed the, "virtues of the city and of the newspaper as the best way to tap its prosperous postwar consumers." (NYT). The photos were then published in a book called, New York Is. The images from this book were thought to be lost until they were recently discovered in a New York Times archive. Read more about this discovery at Times' Lens blog. These photographs were published in a book called, New York Is. Some of these photos will appear in this Sunday's February 19, 2012 Metropolitan section of The New York Times.

Robert Frank, U.S. 90, en route to Del Rio, Texas, 1955

 Some books in the collection covering Robert Frank.

 The Americans

 Armed with a camera and a fresh cache of film and bankrolled by a Guggenheim Foundation grant, Robert Frank crisscrossed the United States during 1955 and 1956. The photographs he brought back form a portrait of the country at the time and hint at its future. He saw the hope of the future in the faces of a couple at city hall in Reno, Nevada, and the despair of the present in a grimy roofscape. He saw the roiling racial tension, glamour, and beauty, and, perhaps because Frank himself was on the road, he was particularly attuned to Americans' love for cars. Funeral-goers lean against a shiny sedan, lovers kiss on a beach blanket in front of their parked car, young boys perch in the back seat at a drive-in movie. A sports car under a drop cloth is framed by two California palm trees; on the next page, a blanket is draped over a car accident victim's body in Arizona.

Looking In

Catalog of an exhibition at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., Jan. 18-Apr. 26, 2009, at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, May 16-Aug. 23, 2009, and at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Sept. 22-Dec. 27, 2009.

Hold Still, Keep Going

"Robert Frank not only ranks among the most important of living photographers but is also widely recognized as a seminal figure in the development of experimental cinema. And yet, the continuity and consistency of his work in both photography and film has been barely explored. "Hold still-keep going" fills this obvious void by illustrating and analyzing the underlying aesthetics that have guided Frank's work in both media. From the very outset of his career, Frank distrusted the single photographic image and its claim to freeze moments of truth: time and again he gravitated to the moving image and serial photography, be it in book form or as a panel of photographs. Reproducing more than 100 collages, film stills and serial works, this volume will certainly become a new standard publication on Robert Frank, innovative photographer and experimental filmmaker. The book also contains an illustrated bibliography and biography featuring dozens of previously unpublished images of Robert Frank, his family and his friends. Published in conjunction with a major traveling exhibition, this is an essential addition to all photography and film collections."(from book jacket).

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