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56 of 57 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A beautiful yet inexpensive introduction to Atget's Paris, January 11, 2003
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This is one of the more unusual books on my shelves, in that physically it is designed to bear a resemblence on its exterior to some travel guides. The photograph above doesn't do it justice. The material is kivar-like, and his famous photograph of the entrance to the Moulin Rouge is tinted in red and yellow. Inside, the photographs are arranged thematically, according such topics as Salesman and Traders on the Streets of Paris, or Trades, Shops, and Window Displays, or interiors of Parisian homes, or, my favorite, Old Paris.
As the introduction of the book points out, Atget was the great photographic recorder of Old Paris. It is to Paris of the turn of the 19th to the 20th century what Weegee was to lower Manhattan. The pictures in this book are nothing short of remarkable, and to look at them for any length of time helps transport one, to the extent that that is possible, to a world that no longer exists. This is not beautiful, genteel Paris. It isn't the Paris of Proust. It is more the Paris of Baudelaire fifty years down the road, the Paris of Toulouse-Latrec.
This without any question the finest inexpensive edition of Atget's photographs currently available, and since Atget is the predominant photographer of the Paris of a hundred years ago, the best inexpensive book of photographs of Old Paris.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The master at work, January 18, 2009
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This book is a wonderful collection of work by Atget. One, at least I, tend to forget just how influential Atget was in bridging documentary photography to art. One star off because I wish the book had larger dimensions and better print quality, not that the quality is bad. This is an excellent value for a budget book.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Atget was one of the Pioneers of Street Photography, May 12, 2009
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This review is from: Atget: Paris (Taschen 25th Anniversary Edition) (Hardcover)
Score another beautifully done coffee table book of photography to Taschen's publishing reputation. Atget was not only one of the pioneers of street photography he may have been the first full-time practitioner of that art? If not the first, he was certainly one of the best and he devoted his entire life to that career. It was amazing he could make a living at it, but then again he had given up both his acting and painting careers, so it may have seemed more lucrative than either of those professions.
"Born in 1857 the son of a Libourne carriage-builder, he lived for over three decades in the great metropolis of Paris, where he constantly explored the city's historic streets and squares, made contact with numerous potential buyers, and gave evening lectures in adult education centers." His original plan was to sell individual photographs of scenes and nudes to artists in order to save them the costs of traveling to the location or paying for models. He had a great many commissions and contracts to document the historic architecture of "Old Paris." His normal shooting gear included 20 kilos of equipment including a heavy-duty tripod, wooden camera and a supply of 18 X 24 cm glass negatives. He spent his entire adult life dragging this heavy burden around all of Paris and its suburbs. It was amazing he had any energy left to take his photos.
"From 1902, onwards, his visiting cards and letterheads proudly read `E. Atget, Author and Publisher of a Photographic Collection of Old Paris.'" By this time he had become a successful and much in demand photographer.
Around 1909 the Paris photographer grew tired of working on a commission basis and started publishing his work in the form of albums of prints and post cards. The subjects of the albums tended to focus on particular subjects such as "Vehicles of Paris" which was devoted to the pre-automobile means of transport used by Partisans. As the son of carriage maker, Atget had a particular affinity for these horse drawn means of transport and those pictures are some of this reviewer's favorite examples of the photographer's work. He concentrated on the old and carefully avoided the new and trendy. Photographer friend and promoter of Atget's work, Berenice Abbott who eventually purchased most of Atget's negatives and prints from his estate, counted 121 different albums of his work in 1927. Samples from these different albums and motifs are used to separate the different types of photographs reproduced in this collection. Two of my favorite sections in addition to the "Vehicles of Paris" are the so-called "bizarre series, such as portraits of prostitutes (1921), or shots of merry-go-rounds. Added to this, he made a new edition his of his photographs of shop-windows." The shop window displays look very much like the products of today and include styles of clothing that are once again coming into vogue. A neighbor of Atget, Man Ray, was one of the first photographers to take notice of Atget's work and began collecting and publishing it as well as recommending it to other artists, collectors and publishers. May Ray also shared Atget's interest in clothing mannequins, but while Atget considered all his work mere documentation of the world he lived in, Man Ray was more interested in making his photography something more. Berenice Abbott was one of May Ray's darkroom assistants and she may have introduced Ray to Atget or vice-versa since Man Ray was his neighbor?
I don't want to end this short review without also mentioning the collections of Street Fairs and the many portraits of "Salesmen and Traders on the Streets of Paris." Both chapters contain many memorable images including one of my favorites entitled 'Model-Boat hirer." That picture brings back many happy memories of my own childhood in St. Louis where I used to sail one of my grandfather's antique model boats on the lake behind the St. Louis Art Museum.
Little about Atget's personal life is known, but this volume does include an excellent year-by-year illustrated biography of what is known about his background. This is one of the more important collections of photographic history that has been published by Taschen Publishing. The book contains separate translations of the text in English, French and German. This is another nice book for the serious collectors of photography or fans of "Old Paris."
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, December 23, 2011
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This review is from: Atget: Paris (Taschen 25th Anniversary Edition) (Hardcover)
Excellent presentation and quality of images. Good representation of what is the whole work of the best Paris-dedicated photographer of the 19th-20th centuries.
This book is a must, don't hesitate!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gorgeous book!, July 11, 2011
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Amazon User (Philadelphia, PA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Atget: Paris (Taschen 25th Anniversary Edition) (Hardcover)
This is a beautiful, solid book with French, English, and German text. The photos are stunning. An extremely good value for the price.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Was in my apartment in Paris...., May 26, 2014
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Mavendetout "El Gato:" (Valrico, Florida United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Atget: Paris (Taschen 25th Anniversary Edition) (Hardcover)
We just returned two days ago from a two week stay in Paris. This book was in our apartment and I found it marvelous. For anyone in love with that city, or simply appreciates great photography, this is a must. Found--and bought--the Taschen "Brasai Paris" which I would also encourage readers to buy. In fact, ALL of the Taschen items are incredible value. Oh. I miss Paris already. Too bad there's no place on Amazon to review that city.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What a Bargain!, June 14, 2014
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This review is from: Atget: Paris (Taschen 25th Anniversary Edition) (Hardcover)
Beautiful large hardcover edition in French, English and German. Quality paper and excellent printing. A real time machine looking into the late 1880s and early 1900s before Paris was forever changed with the massive renovation of the city in the years following. Loving care was given to the photographer and the city. A real treasure and a tremendous value at this price. Don't miss this one!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Atget vs Marville - 2 very different men view Paris, July 11, 2014
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This review is from: Atget: Paris (Taschen 25th Anniversary Edition) (Hardcover)
This book was a real bargain and quite a different view of Paris than that of Charles Marville. I was glad I purchased both, and I expect to enjoy both for years to come. Also, a much smaller book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I just like these photos., June 10, 2014
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Turn of the twentieth century, the last of medieval Paris disappearing, or perhaps a little later. Mostly buildings, but the people are great.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Gift, February 10, 2014
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Peggy Oakes (BEAVERCREEK, OH, US) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Atget: Paris (Taschen 25th Anniversary Edition) (Hardcover)
Son and wife went to Paris for ten days in May 2013 this was prelude gift for them they loved their sojourn and love vintage so perfect combo
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Atget: Paris (Taschen 25th Anniversary Edition)
Atget: Paris (Taschen 25th Anniversary Edition) by Eugène Atget (Hardcover - August 1, 2008)
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