IN THE AMERICAN WEST, BOLDLY INSCRIBED BY AVEDON
AVEDON, Richard. In the American West, 1979-1984. New York: Harry N. Abrams, (1985). Folio (11-1/2 by 14-1/2 inches), original tan cloth, mounted photographic cover illustrations, acetate. $1200.
First edition of Avedon’s portrait book of western workers and drifters, signed and dated by him in the year of publication, “Avedon ‘85,” with over 100 stunning full-page black-and-white portraits (one folding).
“A notable contribution to photographic history and, perhaps, to photographic theory as well” (McMurtry). “Richard Avedon was 55 years old in October of 1978 and at the top of his game. He had spent his life photographing people of power, people of accomplishment, and women of great beauty… An ‘Avedon portrait’ had become a standard phrase in the art world’s vernacular… But only a month after the opening of a retrospective of his fashion work at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, he would begin to consider a new project that would take him into the American West” (Laura Wilson). These striking portraits of workers of the West were commissioned by the Amon Carter Museum in Fort Worth, Texas, after its director, Mitchell Wilder, saw Avedon’s photograph of Wilbur Powell, ranch foreman in Montana (the last image in this book). In Avedon’s words, “What I consider the human predicament may simply be my own” (quoted by Capote). See Roth 148; Icons of Photography, 148.
A fine copy.