PHOTOGRAPHER MONOGRAPHS

PUBLISHER
Eakins Press Foundation

BOOK FORMAT
Hardcover, 7.5 x 10 in. / 136 pgs / 50 duotone.

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Pub Date
Active

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D.A.P. Exclusive
PUBLISHER BACKLIST

PRODUCT DETAILS
ISBN 9780871300706 TRADE
List Price: $50.00 CDN $67.50 GBP £45.00

AVAILABILITY
In stock

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EAKINS PRESS FOUNDATION

Carl Van Vechten: 'O, Write My Name': American Portraits, Harlem Heroes

Introduction by Darryl Pinckney.

Above: Spread featuring James Baldwin from 'Carl Van Vechten: 'O, Write My Name': American Portraits, Harlem Heroes.'

This elegantly designed and beautifully produced volume presents portraits of 50 extraordinary individuals who contributed to making the Harlem Renaissance one of the great cultural movements in American history. Some of the subjects are familiar—icons of music, dance, theater, literature, art, academia and sports—while others are considerably less well known, but equally important to the spirit at the heart of the movement.
The photographs show the sitters not only as public personalities but also as private citizens. They ennoble without flattery, and benefit from the insight that their friendship with Van Vechten engendered. Carl Van Vechten (1880–1964) was a well-known and controversial figure during his lifetime. He was a celebrated dance critic, novelist, photographer and friend of Harlem. In his introduction to the book, Darryl Pinckney writes of Van Vechten, "He recreated himself as an artist and he became a portrait photographer of historical importance…. [The Harlem Renaissance] was a cultural movement that through his photography Van Vechten both witnessed and abetted. In remaining true to the cause, he discovered his best self."
'O, Write My Name': American Portraits, Harlem Heroes is both a cultural and photographic treasure, providing new audiences with compelling studies of these inimitable figures who so essentially shaped what we know as American culture. The book is intended to contribute to a deep and lasting appreciation of the achievements of African-Americans of this era by informing succeeding generations about their works and their personalities.


Above: Spread featuring James Baldwin from 'Carl Van Vechten: 'O, Write My Name': American Portraits, Harlem Heroes.'

Carl Van Vechten: 'O, Write My Name': American Portraits, Harlem Heroes

in stock  $50.00


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FROM THE ARTBOOK BLOG

CORY REYNOLDS | DATE 2/29/2020

In 'O, Write My Name,' Black History via Harlem Heroes

In 'O, Write My Name,' Black History via Harlem Heroes

This 1947 portrait of the renowned American contralto Marian Anderson is reproduced from 'O, Write My Name,' Eakins Press Foundation's beautifully produced collection of mid-century portraits of major figures of the Harlem Renaissance by Carl Van Vechten. Featuring such noted figures as James Baldwin, Romare Bearden, W.E.B. Dubois, Ella Fitzgerald, Nora Holt, Zora Neale Hurston, Mahalia Jackson, Jacob Lawrence, Alain Locke and Richard Wright, this volume truly brings Black history alive. "Photography in the nineteenth century had its realists, but photography as a tool of social science and anthropology was also used to reinforce the tenets of racism," Darryl Pinckney writes. "The threat of ruin and violence was so real in the early twentieth century, when ninety percent of the black population lived in the South, that it was easy to mistake conformity to racist images on the part of black people for the way they really were. Whites couldn't imagine what blacks had to do to survive. 'We wear the mask that grins and lies,' [a] Paul Dunbar poem begins. But with the migration to the North, and the political change that came with World War II, with black veterans not willing to accept what had happened to their fathers after World War I, the country began to see and hear black people as themselves. It was a cultural movement that through his photography Van Vechten both witnessed and abetted. In remaining true to the cause, he discovered his best self." continue to blog


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