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Peter Beard

Hardcover, 10.2 x 14.7 in., 11.83 lb, 770 pages
US$ 150
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Pioneering contemporary artist Peter Beard turned his life in New York and on the African continent into a Gesamtkunstwerk; a collage of photography, ecology, and diary writing. The original limited edition may have instantly sold out, but the book is now back to present the artist’s unique world, a realm of art, science, and beauty.

Customer reviews (14)

Journey into the World of Peter Beard

An artist’s life magnified
Artist, diarist, collector, and writer Peter Beard (1938-2020) fashioned his life into a work of art; the illustrated diaries he kept from a young age evolved into a serious career as an artist and earned him a central position in the international art world. He collaborated with Francis Bacon and Salvador Dalí, he made diaries with Andy Warhol, worked on books with scientists like Dr. Norman Borlaug, Dr. Richard Laws, and Alistair Graham, and toured with Truman Capote, Terry Southern, and the Rolling Stones—all of whom are brought to life, literally and figuratively, in his work. He delved into the world of fashion for its beautiful women, taking Vogue stars like Veruschka to Africa and bringing new ones back to the U.S. with him.

After spending time in Kenya and striking up a friendship with the author Isak Dinesen (Karen Blixen) in the early 1960s, Beard bought 50 acres next to her farm with the stipulation that he would film and write about the land and its flora and fauna. He witnessed the dawn of Kenya’s population explosion, which challenged finite resources and stressed animal populations—including the starving elephants of Tsavo dying by the tens of thousands in a wasteland of eaten trees. So he documented what he saw—with diaries, photographs, and collages. He went against the wind in publishing unique and sometimes shocking books of these works, including The End of the Game. The corpses were laid bare; the facts carefully recorded, sometimes in type and often by hand. Beard used his photographs as a canvas onto which he superimposed multi-layered contact sheets, ephemera, found objects, newspaper clippings that are elaborately embellished with meticulous handwriting, old-master inspired drawings, and often swaths of animal blood used as paint.

In 2006, TASCHEN first published the book that has come to define his oeuvre, signed by the artist and published in two volumes. It sold out instantly and became a highly sought-after collector’s item. In the decade since, the monograph has been revived in two smaller versions; but sometimes, bigger is better. Now, the book you haven’t been able to get your hands on is available in one large-format volume.
The artist

Peter Beard (1938–2020) began taking photographs and keeping diaries from early childhood. By the time he graduated from Yale University, he had developed a keen interest in Africa. Throughout the 1960s and ’70s he worked in Tsavo Park, the Aberdares, and Lake Turkana in Kenya’s northern frontier. A constant creator, Beard the chronicler photographed, wrote, drew, collaged, and assembled a history of his life experiences and our own.

The editors

Nejma Beard is the Executive Director of the Peter Beard Studio. Her spirit and experience are synchronous with Beard’s—having been born and raised in Kenya. This deep familiarity and a devotion to a place and a people formed their unique collaborative relationship. Primary to her work is a deep concern for the future of the world and a commitment to ecologic and humanitarian efforts.

David Fahey is co-owner of the Fahey/Klein Gallery, Los Angeles. During his 31-year career in the field, he has collaborated on over 45 fine art photography books. He is the co-vice president of the Herb Ritts Foundation and serves on the Photography Advisory Council for the J. Paul Getty Museum.

The authors

Owen Edwards has written about photography for more than 30 years for numerous publications including American Photographer, New York Times Magazine, and Smithsonian.

Steven M. L. Aronson, a former book publisher, is a writer and editor. He edited and published Peter Beard’s book Longing for Darkness and wrote the T.V. special The End of the Game. He is the author of HYPE and the co-author of Savage Grace.

The contributor

Ruth Ansel is an award-winning art director known for her innovative design at many of America's top fashion and cultural magazines since the 1960s. Ansel Design Studio (est. 1992) has produced international fashion campaigns and books with photographers including Peter Beard, Richard Avedon, and Annie Leibovitz.

Peter Beard
Hardcover, 10.2 x 14.7 in., 11.83 lb, 770 pages

Customer reviews (14)


DUBRANA, November 06, 2021
A book about art, unique. Peter Beard takes us through the twentieth century creative process of editing and collage in the arts. An examplaire that sums up an extraordinary artistic life. To read and watch without moderation.

Africa with style

Libor, October 28, 2021
Africa with its beauty and cruelty. Collage of memories and the joy of creation. Greatly reproduced photographs and collages by Peter Beard. I was especially pleased with Eva Herzig's photographs.

A must have

Francisco, October 28, 2021
Peter Beard's collages are really amazing!

Muy Recomendable

Enrique, October 27, 2021
La historia personal de Peter Beard es increíble. Por lo tanto, había que plasmarla en un libro increíble.
Muy Recomendable!!!

Awesome service

Regi Van Genechten, October 27, 2021
Taschen Brussels was so helpful in finding me the XXL version of Peter Beard which was sold out for years.
Real passion for books by the employees of Taschen Brussels, and so friendly support. Thank you again !

A true experience

Giuliano, October 27, 2021
Superb quality. Browsing the pages of these book seems like being directly in the centre of the action in Africa. Fantastic photos and fantastic story. A true experience.

Wonderful and terrible book

Thibault, October 27, 2021
I had wanted this book for a long time - I already had a small pocket edition that did not render it true justice. I finally bought thanks to Taschen promotions.
The large format is great, the size emphasize the interaction between photos, drawings and handwritten text. Peter Beard is a unique photographer and he produces a book that is both beautiful and terrifying, filled with wonders and nostalgia. Like Salgado work on Amazonia, it's a document on a lost world.

Peter Beard

Alfonso, November 05, 2021
Subyace en los collages de peter beard una guerra secreta entre el mundo que llamamos civilizado y sus simbolos y la realidad de una naturaleza salvaje y fascinante. La obra de Peter Beard es un grito en favor de esta ultima.

Mehr als nur ein Bildband

Mirko, November 03, 2021
Lange gezögert, doch dann zugeschlagen: Keine Seite bereut.


Christian, October 30, 2021
Un indispensable dans la bibliothèque.