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In Focus: Dorothea Lange

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In Focus: Dorothea Lange
Photographs from The J. Paul Getty Museum. By Judith Keller. (Los Angeles, The J. Paul Getty Museum: 2002. 50 duotone illustrations, Pg. 144.) ISBN: 0-89236-675-3.

Reviewed by Rochelle Caviness - December 31, 2002

Dorothea Lange (1895-1965) is perhaps best known for her photographic documentation of life during the Great Depression. In In Focus: Dorothea Lange about 50 of Lange's photographs, from throughout her long career, have been reproduced in this stirring book.

The photos included in this collection where selected from the collection of Dorothea Lange photographs held by the J. Paul Getty Museum. The photographs are accompanied by informational descriptions. The texts accompanying the plates were written by Judith Keller, associate curator of photographs at the J. Paul Getty Museum. Her descriptions provide a wealth of details, including such information as background or historical information related to the photograph or the subjects, as well as biographical details about Lange. The photos are reproduced as duotone illustrations and each photo is annotated with the work's title, when it was taken, the type of print, and the size of the print.

Besides the illustrations and their accompanying text, In Focus: Dorothea Lange also includes a chronology of Lange's life, a foreward by Deborah Gribbon, and an informative introduction by Judith Keller. This introduction provides a brief overview on Lange's life and career. The text is also enhanced by the inclusion of an edited transcript from a colloquium conducted on Lange. This transcript provides commentary on Lange's life and work by the likes of Judith Keller, Keith Davis, David Featherstone, Therese Heyman, Weston Naef, Sally A. Stein, and Michael Williamson.

This book provides not only an informed overview of Lange's life and the broad range of her photographic work, but is also offers readers access to a wide cross-section of her work. This book is part of the J. Paul Getty Museum's In Focus series, which examines the lives of outstanding photographers.

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