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The Bathers (Center for Documentary Studies/Honickman First Book Prize in Photography) Hardcover – December 1, 2009


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Editorial Reviews

Review

“Jennette Williams’s photographs of women bathing portray the female form, but they transcend simple representation to speak powerfully about women’s own private sense of identity and beauty. It doesn’t matter that these bodies are not conventionally ideal—when these women are in front of Jennette’s camera, they are proud to reveal their full femininity. . . Jennette is both an excellent documentary photographer and a superb portraitist, a rare combination. . . . As in Ingres’s The Turkish Bath, Jennette’s lounging women not only revel in intimate feminine moments but in the camaraderie of women as well. They relax together, soaking in the steamy atmosphere. These hauntingly beautiful and iconic images of women are captured in extraordinary, magical spaces enhanced by wonderful light.”—Mary Ellen Mark, from the foreword


“What makes for beauty in women? How do we as a society perceive women as they age? I began with what were simple intentions. I wanted to photograph without sentiment or objectification women daring enough to stand, without embarrassment or excuse, before my camera and I wanted my photographs to be beautiful. . . . I drew upon classical gestures and poses of Baroque and Neoclassical painters and utilized the platinum printing process to assure a sense of timelessness, as if the older or ‘normal’ woman has always been a subject of the arts.”—Jennette Willams

From the Publisher

"Jennette Williams's photographs of women bathing portray the female form, but they transcend simple representation to speak powerfully about women's own private sense of identity and beauty. It doesn't matter that these bodies are not conventionally ideal--when these women are in front of Jennette's camera, they are proud to reveal their full femininity. . . . Jennette is both an excellent documentary photographer and a superb portraitist, a rare combination. . . . As in Ingres's The Turkish Bath, Jennette's lounging women not only revel in intimate feminine moments but in the camaraderie of women as well. They relax together, soaking in the steamy atmosphere. These hauntingly beautiful and iconic images of women are captured in extraordinary, magical spaces enhanced by wonderful light."--Mary Ellen Mark, from the foreword

"What makes for beauty in women? How do we as a society perceive women as they age? I began with what were simple intentions. I wanted to photograph without sentiment or objectification women daring enough to stand, without embarrassment or excuse, before my camera and I wanted my photographs to be beautiful. . . . I drew upon classical gestures and poses of Baroque and Neoclassical painters and utilized the platinum printing process to assure a sense of timelessness, as if the older or `normal' woman has always been a subject of the arts."--Jennette Williams


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