Artist:
-> Michael Lesy (Author)

Publisher:
-> Blast Books

Michael Lesy - Walker Evans _ Last Photographs & Life Stories - Bildersturm Blog
© Walker Evans [Caroline Lowell, England], December 7, 1973 (detail) | Walker Evans Archive, The Met.

About The Book

When Michael Lesy met Walker Evans in 1973, Evans was old and frail, with just two years left to live. He was also still urgently and obsessively photographing. Evans had become enthralled with the Polaroid SX-70’s colorful instant images, and he used it to take his last photographs – portraits of people, in extreme close up, and portraits of objects.

“Wonder and scrutiny, suffused with desire and dread, produced the portraits he made in his last years,” Lesy notes. “Outside the rooms he inhabited, the world was scattered with objects on their way to oblivion. He photographed them in their passage.” Publisher’s Info

Michael Lesy - Walker Evans _ Last Photographs & Life Stories - Bildersturm Blog
© Walker Evans [Truck Grill, Connecticut], 1973–74.| Walker Evans Archive, The Met.
Michael Lesy - Walker Evans _ Last Photographs & Life Stories - Bildersturm Blog
© D. Kent (American) [Walker Evans Photographing Letterforms on Street], October 1, 1974. | Walker Evans Archive, The Met.
Michael Lesy - Walker Evans _ Last Photographs & Life Stories - Bildersturm Blog
© Walker Evans, [Detail of Street Lettering: “KIN”], October 1, 1974. | Walker Evans Archive, The Met.
Michael Lesy - Walker Evans _ Last Photographs & Life Stories - Bildersturm Blog
© Walker Evans [Palmist Building Window, Alabama], October 1973. | Walker Evans Archive, The Met.
Michael Lesy - Walker Evans _ Last Photographs & Life Stories - Bildersturm Blog
© Walker Evans [Graveyard with Floral Arrangements], October 1973. | Walker Evans Archive, The Met.
Michael Lesy - Walker Evans _ Last Photographs & Life Stories - Bildersturm Blog
© Walker Evans [Ricki Hudeas’s Hand Holding Cigarette, Old Lyme, Connecticut], August 24, 1974 (detail). | Walker Evans Archive, The Met.

He photographed objects as if they were people and people as if they were souls. All the while, he never forgot Blind Joe Death. The annihilations of the First War, the extinctions of the epidemic that followed it, the pyres and the pits—these he never forgot. The still silence of his images was, to the very last, transcendental, and always he remembered the skull beneath the skin. Michael Lesy

Michael Lesy - Walker Evans _ Last Photographs & Life Stories - Bildersturm Blog
© Walker Evans [Nancy Shaver], December 11, 1973 (detail). | Walker Evans Archive, The Met.
Michael Lesy - Walker Evans _ Last Photographs & Life Stories - Bildersturm Blog

-> Further information: https://www.blastbooks.com/book/walker-evans-last-photographs-life-stories/

About The Artist

Michael Lesy, PhD, is one of America’s leading photographic scholars. His numerous books include Wisconsin Death Trip, Snapshots 1971–1977, Murder City, Long Time Coming: A Photographic Portrait of America, 1935–1943, and Looking Backward. In 2007, the United States Artists Foundation named Professor Lesy its first Simon Fellow, and in 2013 he was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship for Photography Studies. He lives in Amherst, Massachusetts, and is professor emeritus of literary journalism at Hampshire College.

Related Articles: Michael Lesy: Snapshots 1971–77

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