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Eliot Porter: In the Realm of Nature Hardcover – November 6, 2012


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 144 pages
  • Publisher: J. Paul Getty Museum; 1 edition (November 6, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1606061194
  • ISBN-13: 978-1606061190
  • Product Dimensions: 11.2 x 9.8 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #617,168 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"If you own only one Eliot Porter book, this is the one to have." --The Online Photographer

"For the last several decades landscape photographers have concentrated on showing man's depredations of nature, but their pictures only take on meaning when set against the images of untrammeled beauty by artists such as Porter." -- The Wall Street Journal

"This retrospective from the Getty Museum reviews Porter's career, from his early days as a black-and-white photographer, in the school of Edward Weston and Ansel Adams, to his path-breaking color photography, breathtaking in its attention to subtleties of tone and texture."
 -- Natural History

"[Porter's] images are rich and saturated with movement and detail, qualities that this book by Getty curator Martineau honors by simply getting out of the way.... A brief introduction, white space, short captions, and an emphasis on quality reproduction let the artist's work stand for itself."
Publishers Weekly

From the Author

My interest in Eliot Porter began in 2003 when I came across a portfolio containing his vibrantly colored photographs of grass marshes, lichen-covered trees, and leaf-strewn ponds. I had recently relocated from Massachusetts to Los Angeles to take a job in the Department of Photographs at the J. Paul Getty Museum, and Porter's photographs of the New England woods reminded me of the places I had explored as a child. Recognizing the power of these photographs to transport me to another place, I proposed an exhibition of the work for the summer of 2006. The selection of plates in this book is loosely based on that exhibition and expanded to include some of Porter's best photographs of the American Southwest.

More About the Author

A leading curator in the field of art photography, Paul Martineau is associate curator of photographs at the J. Paul Getty Museum. He received a B.A. in art from the University of Massachusetts at Boston and a M.A. in art history from Williams College. Before joining the Getty Museum in 2003, he held positions at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston and at the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute. Mr. Martineau has organized numerous exhibitions at the Getty, covering a diverse range of topics that span the mid-19th century to the 21st century. He is currently collaborating with the Los Angeles County Museum of Art on an ambitious publication and exhibition project on the photographs of Robert Mapplethorpe; and his next book, The Thrill of the Chase: Samuel J. Wagstaff Jr., Collector of Photographs, is expected to be released in late 2015.

Customer Reviews

If you love landscape photography you should definitely consider this book.
Bert
Paul Martineau in his book has chosen 91 of Porter's photographs from the Greenberg & Steinhauser collections and the archive of Amon Carter Museum of American Art.
David Tatnall
The color reproductions approximate the look of the Porter's original dye-transfer prints better than any of the other books in my library.
Johnson

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Conrad J. Obregon TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 29, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Although Ansel Adams, Minor White and Edward Weston stand large in the pantheon of great twentieth-century fine-art photographers, nature photographers might certainly reserve the prime spot for Eliot Porter. Before Art Wolfe and Frans Lanting there was Porter, photographing the natural world in color.

As a book, "In the Realm of Nature" seems a bit curious. It would appear to be a catalog of a show that occurred at the Getty Museum, except that it follows the show by more than six years. The book is a broad cross section of the artist's work, starting with some of the early black and white pictures he took as a young man and proceeding to the wonderful landscapes and bird pictures taken with the earliest color materials available. It seems a retrospective of his work, and so, while his fans will find nothing new here, it does gather his greatest work under one cover. Here are the pictures he took of the western wilderness, first used by the Sierra Club in its fight against the Glen Canyon Dam, and then more widely published as a celebration of the natural world.

Modern photographers will see how technology affects the image aesthetic. In his bird images, because of the available film's low ISO, Porter was required to use huge banks of flash bulbs to capture flight images. This resulted in a huge fall off in light in the backgrounds to almost complete black. Today's photographers can capture similar images without using any flash, resulting in brighter, more realistic backgrounds. Yet long before Arthur Morris, there was Elliot Porter.

His landscapes also appeal to a slightly different aesthetic then the other art photographers of his day, and indeed, today.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Rocky on February 21, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
For people who love photography and its history, this book is a must. The presentation is skilled. It starts with Porter's black and white pictures and moves on to his color photography. Although I was familiar with many of these photographs, I had never seen them presented as part of the history of Porter's work and development. Nor had I realized that many of these familiar photographs were taken by Porter. No matter what the subject or type of film, Porter had a remarkable "eye". It is a pleasure to see what he did with it. I highly recommend this book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Michigan Reviewer on August 13, 2013
Format: Hardcover
I take pictures. Poorly. Mr. Porter took photographs. Grandly. Beautiful Italian manufactured book celebrating the work of this most excellent photographer. Many are in color. Some black and white. Taken in different areas of the USA and Baja California, Mexico at different times of the year. Some birds, exquisitely done, and others natural rock formations or beautiful flora. Thank goodness we have people like Mr. Porter to remind us of the glory of our natural world. He shares places I would love to see, but with limited resources, probably will not be able to. Fantastic book, this!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By David Tatnall on April 17, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Eliot Porter was one of the world's greatest nature photographers working in colour. Paul Martineau in his book has chosen 91 of Porter's photographs from the Greenberg & Steinhauser collections and the archive of Amon Carter Museum of American Art. Porter pioneered in the field of colour print making using Kodak's dye transfer process. The photographs in the book are reproduced beautifully. Unlike over coloured contemporary digital photography, Porter's dye transfer photographs have a subtle and soft colour. The book also has some examples of Porter's earlier black & white photographs.

The book has an introduction by Michael Brune ED of the Sierra Club and an essay by Paul Martineau.

Recommended for anyone interested in colour photography and the use of photography for conservation.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Johnson on March 20, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Martineau brings Porter's biography up-to-date and includes the photographer's most important individual works and series in color and in black-and-white. The color reproductions approximate the look of the Porter's original dye-transfer prints better than any of the other books in my library. It is an elegant and fitting tribute to the man who changed the way we look at the natural world.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Tex Andrews on November 22, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I would say a must for every landscape photographer, but it would go over most of their heads. Don't look for screaming, over-saturated, spectacular, drama-drama-drama, photos here. And check out his brother's work, Fairfield Porter. Almost identical sensitivity, but a painter.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Mike Gerrard on March 12, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Eliot Porter was one of the USA's pre-eminent nature photographers, whose work celebrating American landscapes and wildlife had such a profound impact that it led to the passing of the Wilderness Act of 1964. Born in 1901, Porter was an early pioneer of colour photography, and this collection of ninety-five of his images is a superb tribute both to him and to those parts of the USA he depicted. His photographs of leaves and lichen, of peeling birch bark and of bright blue jays and bold red cardinals show his eye for detail, and the world in a grain of sand.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Bert on February 28, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Lovely color reproductions in this book. More a contemplation of nature than just pretty pictures. If you love landscape photography you should definitely consider this book.
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