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Description - Images of the West by Francois Brunet

As American settlement expanded westward in the 1860s, the U.S. government undertook large-scale investigations of its new territories. "Images of the West: Survey Photography in French Collections, 1860-1880" presents memorable glass-plate photographs from these federal surveys. The selection includes breathtaking views of such iconic sites as yosemite, as well as lesser-known ethnographic portraits taken by Timothy H. O'Sullivan, William H. Jackson, and William Bell, among others. The accompanying essays discuss how the photographs were used to promote white settlement, how their distribution at home and abroad contributed to the aggrandizement of the American West, and how the exploitative ideology underlying the use of photography extended to attitudes toward both American landscapes and American Indians. The images are all drawn from French public collections, which hold an astonishing number of these U.S. survey photographs. Accompanying an exhibition at the Musee d'Art Americain Giverny, "Images of the West" provides a critical new examination of a bygone era.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780932171542
ISBN-10: 0932171540
Format: Paperback
(292mm x 238mm x mm)
Pages: 128
Imprint: Terra Foundation for the Arts,U.S.
Publisher: Terra Foundation for the Arts,U.S.
Publish Date: 1-Jul-2007
Country of Publication: United States

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Author Biography - Francois Brunet

Francois Brunet is professor at the Universite Paris-VII. He focuses on the history of photography and images of the United States as well as on American literature and culture of the nineteenth century. Bronwyn Griffith, formerly associate curator at the Musee d'Art Americain Giverny, is an independent art historian specializing in American photography of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

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