From basic sustenance to savory repasts, food awakens the senses and touches both private and public life. It can be political, religious, aspirational, commercial, creative, symbolic, national, and regional. Food’s complexity of form and meaning—and the fact that it’s often at hand—have made it a much-photographed subject throughout the history of photography. Interest in both food photography and food as a subject has risen in recent years, and this is the first book to cover food photography’s rich history—not only in fine art photography, but also in crossover genres such as commercial and scientific photography and photojournalism. Susan Bright’s introduction and commentary accompanying the photographs bring insight and intelligence to this spectacular subject, and trace the progression of the genre from photography’s beginnings to present day, featuring artists from all eras—Roger Fenton, Nickolas Muray, Edward Weston, Irving Penn, Stephen Shore, Laura Letinsky, Wolfgang Tillmans, Nobuyoshi Araki, and Martin Parr, to name a few. Through key pictures, Bright explores the important figures and movements of food photography to provide an essential primer.
Susan Bright (author) is a curator and writer. She has authored numerous books including Art Photography Now (Aperture, 2005), Face of Fashion (Aperture, 2007), How We Are: Photographing Britain (2007: coauthored with Val Williams), Auto Focus (2010), and Home Truths: Photography and Motherhood (2013). She co-curated How We Are: Photographing Britain (2007), which was the first major exhibition of British photography at Tate. The exhibition of Home Truths (Photographers’ Gallery and Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago) was named one of the top exhibitions of 2013/2014 by the Guardian and the Chicago Tribune. She currently lives in Paris. With images by Roger Fenton, Nickolas Muray, Edward Weston, Irving Penn, Stephen Shore, Laura Letinsky, Wolfgang Tillmans, Nobuyoshi Araki, and Martin Parr, among others.