COLORFULLY INSCRIBED BY RALPH STEINER, FIRST EDITION OF A POINT OF VIEW
STEINER, Ralph. A Point of View. Middletown, Connecticut: Wesleyan University Press, (1978). Quarto, original gray cloth, original pictorial dust jacket. $800.
First edition of Steiner’s autobiography, inscribed in red and black ink, “For Trina, a meshuggenah*-on-the-side-of-the-Angels. Ralph Steiner,” and continuing along the bottom of the page in red ink, “* spelling approved by the Chief Rabbi of Israel.” With over 100 black-and-white photographs.
A “work of exceptional quality… for anyone interested in great photographic art, A Point of View is not to be missed” (Hilton Kramer). A contemporary of Stieglitz, Steichen and Strand, Ralph Steiner infused his work both as a commercial photographer and independent artist with an ongoing interest in “eye-catching formal arrangements that he found or made” (Frizot, 482). Yet, as Willard Van Dyke writes in his introduction, Steiner remained compelled not simply by “the photograph for its own sake; on the contrary he was… only concerned with what the picture does, what it has to say.” Additionally, as an editor at PM, Steiner furthered the careers of photographers such as Weegee, and also explored filmmaking, working with Paul Strand on Pare Lorenz’s 1935 film classic, Plow That Broke the Plains. With extensive essay by the photographer detailing his influences and intentions. Preceded by signed limited edition published the same year. Without scarce original slipcase.
Text fine and bright, light edge-wear to near-fine book. Slight chipping, dampstaining and edge-wear to original dust jacket in very good condition. A lovely copy, scarce inscribed.