Lee Friedlander: Letters From The People
Like Friedlander's Nudes , Letters is about seeing photographically and is full of the strange, surreal found imagery, the jarring montages (really superimpositions in space), and the surgical framing that are Friedlander trademarks. The immediate subject is writing in public places--printed, painted, or hand-scrawled--that appears here first as single letters in alphabetical order, then, successively, numerals, combinations of numerals, and combinations of letters in signs and graffiti that contain messages of anger, violence, religion, sex, and love. There is no overall narrative, but the progression from elements to messages builds into a complexity of significance, ending with a graffito full of the lonely longing most graffiti betray: "Everyday I calls a phone to her. Every night I dreams for her." Thus a universal story is reflected, one that may be something of a projection of Friedlander's own mind, as, of course, are all these "letters from the people." Friedlander's work has always been best in books. Unsurprisingly, this one is superb--lavishly oversize, featuring page layouts of greater variety, and more complexly paced, as it were, than his other books.
13.75 x 0.75 x 14.75 inches