Photographs have a strange and powerful way of shaping the way we see the world and influencing our perceptions of reality. To demonstrate the unique and profound influence on culture and society that photographs have, Photo Icons puts the most important landmarks in the history of photography under the microscope.
Each chapter of this special edition focuses on a single image which is described and analyzed in detail, in aesthetic, historical, and artistic contexts. The book begins with the very first permanent images (Nicéphore Niépce’s 1827 eight-hour-exposure rooftop picture and Louis Daguerre’s famous 1839 street scene) and takes the reader up through the present day, via the avant-garde photography of the 1920s and works such as Dorothea Lange’s Migrant Mother (1936), Robert Doisneau’s Kiss in Front of City Hall (1950), and Martin Parr’s ’New European photography.’
Hans-Michael Koetzle is a Munich-based freelance author and journalist, focusing mainly on history and the aesthetics of photography. He has published numerous books on photography, including Die Zeitschrift twen (1995), Photo Icons (2001), Das Lexikon der Fotografen (2002), and René Burri (2004).