City Gorged with Dreams: Surrealism and Documentary Photography in Interwar Paris
Manchester University Press
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When the relationship between Surrealism and photography first became a subject of academic attention in the 1980s, the common view was that the core of Surrealist photography lay in staged and manipulated work. What was constantly elided in that account was the crucial relationship between documentary photography and Surrealism. In 1995, I was awarded my Doctorate for my thesis "Paris as the site of Surrealist Photography, 1924-1939." This research was subsequently developed, focused and disseminated through the publication of City Gorged with Dreams, which has become a key text in the study of Surrealism and photography. It would not now be possible to discuss Surrealist photography without reference to my research. The book was reviewed in Leonardo, Papers of Surrealism, History of Photography and Source, where Justin Carville wrote: ‘Erudite in its conception and lucid in its execution, City Gorged with Dreams is a major contribution to recent studies which have sought to reinstate the political and cultural significance of realism in the surrealist project’ (Source, no.32, p.63). In addition, the book has been referenced in a range of academic sites, including books by Mary Ann Caws (Surrealism, 2004), Liz Wells (Photography: a Critical Introduction, 2004), Sarah Greenough (André Kertész, 2005), Michael Richardson (Surrealism and Cinema, 2006) and Julia Kelly (Art, Ethnography and the Life of Objects, 2007). There have also been citations in articles in the Journal of Visual Culture, Papers of Surrealism, MLN and October. For scholars of Surrealism, the book has connected with an understanding of the importance of the 'document' for Surrealism. For writers on photography, the book’s analysis of the potential ambiguity and subversiveness of 'straight' photography resonates productively with recent developments in documentary. Moreover, the book has also been cited in a number of other subject areas: ethnography, urban studies and contemporary art.
Showing items related by title, author, subject and abstract.
(History of Photography, 2006-08-01)Shortly after the publication of my book City Gorged with Dreams, David Bate of the University of Westminster published a book on Surrealist photography, which took a very different approach. Our work was complementary ...
Unknown author (Manchester University Press, 2008-10-17)My book City Gorged with Dreams focussed on work made in Paris, but I was aware that there had also been a great deal of Surrealist photography made elsewhere. Consequently, I wrote about Czech Surrealist photography ...
Unknown author (Chris Boot / National Museum of Photography, Film and Television, 2008-10-17)The exhibition A Gentle Madness was the first major retrospective of Tony Ray-Jones’ work, and looked to re-appraise his contribution to photography in Britain. Ray-Jones is recognized as important for several reasons, ...