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Book of Books

Morell, Abelardo

Code 2696
ISBN: 9780821258149
Publisher: 0


At least in a figurative sense, this book...is a bibliophile's dream. The 52 well-reproduced photographs are paeans to the materiality of bookness, as imagined from every possible tangent -- books on shelves, books stacked in piles, book spines, book edges, book pages, open books, big books and small books. The notion of photographing books may sound adolescent, but Abelardo Morell has made a career of taking childlike ideas and rendering them in sophisticated, reflexive fashion. He doesn't disappoint here. Whether the image is simple, like one that shows the spine of a book titled 'Thought, 5, 1930-31,' or complex, like ' A Tale of Two Cities,' in which Dickens' famous beginning is blurred by type bleeding through from the reverse side of the page, Morell manages to make pictures seem symbolically rich as words. His photographs of illustrated books are especially dense and suggestive; the camera stares into the fold of adjacent pages, reflecting and refracting the printed pictures so that they become something else: new pictures".Andy Grundberg, The New York Times"Abelardo Morell's photographs are living proof that books are much more than carriers of information, that they are precious artifacts in their own right, with stories quite apart from their texts to tell. A dazzling performance, arriving, as it happens, in the nick of time. Nicely done." Nicholas A. Basbanes, author of A Gentle Madness and Patience & Fortitude"In a superb display of talent, renowned photographer Morell provides a magical experience for the bibliophile and soothing engagement for photography enthusiasts. Morell transforms everyday objects-book spines, pages, illustrations, typeface, and shelves-into memorable conduits of our long connection with reading and the book. This invigorating work reaffirms the importance of books and serves as a reminder of their fragile but enduring presence in our history and psyche. Nicholson Baker, author of the controversial Double Fold: Libraries and the Assault on Paper, contributes a fitting preface; an engaging and beautifully written piece, it reveals the writer's sincere love for books. However, the stars of the volume are, undeniably, the books on which Morell focuses his camera. If they could talk, those books would thank him for rediscovering them and adding, through his genius, such grace and sentiment to the essence of their existence on the pages of yet another book" Edward K. Owusu-Ansah, Library Journal"Although we may have been taught not to judge a book by its cover, photographer Abelardo Morell reverses the old saying and delightfully shows us how to relish a book by its look. This inventive and clever photographic ode to the printed word captures all the powerful possibilities contained on the page. A Book of Books gives us images that range from formal studies of shape and texture to the joyously whimsical. Most luminous are the sculptural renditions, fluid pages curving over their spines like majestic mountains in the distance. The abstract pattern of a dictionary takes on the enigmatic characteristics of crop circles, while a water-damaged book shows itself as a twisted organic form. An aging book slowly decays in a stark image of paper so fragile it has practically turned to dust. Library stacks seen from above become a labyrinth through Morell?s lens. Includes a lovely preface by Nicholson Baker. Perfect for any book enthusiast." J.P. Cohen, AmazonA Book of Books review by Craig Stark, BookThink