Heath is a photographer's photographer. His book has an emotional obliqueness and reserve of sorts that leaves a strong impression, yet the feelings it evokes are hard to put into words. The photographs are mostly dark, with a light, brittle and fugitive, briefly glowing in parts of the pictures like a small fire on a piece of charcoal, about to be extinguished. Shadows and reflections are endowed with as much substance as flesh. The book is built like a piece of music, a jazz riff maybe with long silences in between parts, and six stanzas that could be titled solitude, contemplation, love, war, revolt, beginnings. But the book does not have a beginning and an end. It revolves upon itself and the blanks in between sequences are as important as silences in music. The subtle sequencing that varies sizes, formats and placement on the page plays off the secret geometry that ties lights and shadows within each image and creates visual links from page to page.
Originally published in 1965, this landmark book of photographs has long been out-of-print and highly sought by collectors. This edition, enlarged in format to that of DAVE HEATH's original design, has been updated with an introduction by ROBERT FRANK. Eighty-three photographs exquisitely printed in the NovaTone process for a brilliant tonal scale.