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Koudelka: Gypsies Hardcover – September 30, 2011
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Rarely has a body of work been so deserving of two completely different editions. –Time
Mr. Koudelka's stark images depict the poverty and clannishness of Gypsy life, but unlike many documentary photographers, he does not present their situation as a social problem that can somehow be fixed. Instead, he shows the Gypsies as perpetual outsiders, and their life as a primal mix of glee and wonder, sorrow and mystery. –The New York Times
Gives a palpable sense of a people apart, unto themselves, dislocated from contemporary society and even time. –Huffington Post
Koudelka brings to life the even older world of the Roma gypsies that he encountered in his travels in the late 1960s and early 1970s in images that resonate with mystery and ritual, romance and hardship. –The Guardian
From the Inside Flap
This book is a revised and enlarged version of the original maquette for Josef Koudelka’s Cikáni (Czech for Gypsies) prepared by Koudelka and graphic designer Milan Kopřiva in 1968, and intended for publication in Prague in 1970. Koudelka left Czechoslovakia in 1970 after extensively documenting the Russian invasion of Prague in August 1968. The book was never published in that original form.
This extended version consists of 109 photographs taken between 1962 and 1971 in what was, at the time, Czechoslovakia (Bohemia, Moravia, and Slovakia), Romania, Hungary, France, and Spain. The word Gypsies (the common name for this group when the photographs were taken between 1962 and 1971, before the current term Roma was established) is used as the book title.
Sociologist Will Guy, author of the text that accompanied the first publication of Gypsies, has contributed an updated essay, tracing the migration of the Roma from their original homeland in northern India, to their current status—one that continues to be contested internationally.
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The book differs in several ways from its predecessor, though it represents the same body of work. First, it utilizes a vertical rather than a horizontal format. Horizontally formatted images are presented as two-page spreads almost 20 inches wide, meaning that Koudelka's marvelous use of wide-angle lenses can be viewed in the correct perspective. Two-page spreads usually fail because of the space lost to the gutter, but the new "Gypsies" is beautifully bound and opens almost flat.
There are also no distracting reflections, because the book is printed on matte stock. It is tempting to describe Steidl's quadratone printing as "sumptuous", which it certainly is, but more to the point, the printing serves the photographs: Steidl's craft, in that sense, is totally transparent. The images have a vitality that suggests that they were made in the darkroom, somehow using ink instead of silver.
The work itself remains timeless. It is based on Koudelka's original maquette, adding more than 30 photographs that were not in the 1975 edition, and every one of them is worthy of its place in the new book. If you have never seen Josef Koudelka's work before, there is no better pace to start than with "Gypsies". If you are familiar with the 1975 edition, this one will amaze you. Rarely has an artist been so well-served by his printer and publisher.
Most recent customer reviews
And a lot of unknown pictures.
But it is too big size book.
Totally, it's very well made book.