SAMARAS’ FIRST BOOK, WITH ORIGINAL SIGNED POLAROID, ONLY 100 PRINTED
(SAMARAS, Lucas). Samaras Album. Autointerview Autobiography Autopolaroid. New York: The Whitney Museum of American Art and Pace Editions, (1971). Large quarto, original embossed pictorial cloth, mounted cover photograph, original Polaroid in glassine envelope. $4300.
First edition of Samaras’ multimedia self-portrait, featuring a self-interview, autobiography, and hundreds of Polaroid images, both black-and-white and in color. With original signed limited edition Polaroid, number 92 of only 100 copies.
Published in anticipation of the Whitney’s 1972 Samaras retrospective, “Album gathers the artist’s first body of photographic work, the revealingly transformative self-portraits he called ‘Autopolaroids… The book’s design is nearly as idiosyncratic as its contents. Images— usually antic, erotic variations on a theme— are reproduced in their original size in color and in black and white, and arranged in grids, in rows, or singly on a page as if in a family snapshot album or a demented high school yearbook” (Roth, 212-13). Included are Samaras’ “Auto-Interviews,” a series of “self-investigatory” inquires. “The primary subject of his photographic work is his own self-image, generally distorted and mutilated. He has worked with multi-media collages, and by manipulating the wet dyes in Polaroid photographic film to create what he calls ‘Photo-Transformations” (Stiles & Selz). The original Polaroid included with this copy (also reproduced on page 33) is tipped in as a frontispiece and is initialed and numbered by Samaras, as well as additionally signed in full and numbered on the mount.