Barbara E. Savedoff seeks to discern the distinctive character of photography as an art. Why, she asks, do similar images in paintings and photographs strike us differently? How is our reaction to a photograph of a painting unlike our response to the "real" painting? In this imaginative and beautifully illustrated book, she argues that the way we look at and understand photographs varies dramatically from the way we view other images. Savedoff convincingly demonstrates that photography's perceived realism, along with its unexpected ability to transform its subjects, gives this art form its enigmatic power. Featuring examples of the image-within-an-image, her book explores ambiguities of representation in paintings, in photographs, and in films such as Shall We Dance, Sabotage, and Buster Keaton's Sherlock Junior. The volume also addresses questions concerning altered photographs, photo-realist paintings, animated cartoons, and photographic reproductions.A meditative closing chapter probes the effects of digital alteration on our understanding of images. Savedoff argues that as digital imagery becomes more common, our way of looking at photographs and gauging their impact is irrevocably changed.
Cornell University Press
How Photography Complicates the Picture