From Publishers Weekly
Italian television producer and photographer Bertolotti has amassed one of the world's largest book collections devoted to nude photography; in this anthology of sorts, he presents the cover and a few revealing pictures from more than 160 volumes, often in their original layouts. Bertolotti organizes his own book by themes, while generally adhering to a rough chronology of the genre: beginning with nudes posed in formal academies at the end of the 19th Century, he then moves through the last 100 years, illustrating the subject's evolution and enormous breadth, as well as how the aesthetics of the body reflect the timbre of their historical eras or the agendas of certain political ideologies. For example, a chapter on works published under the Weimar Republic show a fascination with the messy, exotic and sometimes kinky; the following chapter on Nazi-era German books show God-like reverence for healthy, clean Aryan nudes. Vivid images and familiar names-like Man Ray, Bill Brandt, Robert Mapplethorpe and Andre Kertesz-abound, but the volume's encyclopedic scope, buttressed by Bertolotti's socio-cultural overview, makes it more a useful reference rather than a lavish art book.
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About the Author
Born in 1960, Alessandro Bertolotti has worked as a director of variety shows for the Italian television channel Rai for twenty-five years. Passionate about photography, he has published portraits and photographs of female nudes in numerous Italian magazines. He is one of the largest collectors of erotic books and nude photographs in Europe. A portion of his book collection will be exhibited in fall 2007 at the Maison Européenne de la Photographie in Paris.