Multitude, Solitude The Photographs of Dave Heath Keith F. Davis, Michael Torosian

Publication date:
26 Nov 2015
Nelson Atkins
324 pages: 279 x 279mm
20 color, 173 tritone + 60 duotone illus.

The work of American photographer Dave Heath (b. 1931) stuns with its emotional potency. Exploring themes of loneliness and alienation in modern society, Heath’s photographs depict strangers riding the train, watching a Thanksgiving parade, staring pensively at their dining room table, or kissing on the side of a street. Entirely self-taught, Heath stretches the boundaries of the medium and explores the potential of the photo-narrative—through handmade book maquettes, innovative multimedia slide presentations, and other photographic experimentations.
This is the first comprehensive survey of Heath’s deeply personal work, focusing on his astounding contributions to black-and-white photography. These images span the first 20 years of his career, 1949 to 1969, and many of them are previously unpublished. Filling a major gap in scholarship, the catalogue surveys the most groundbreaking facets of Heath’s creative work and highlights its historical importance. Heath’s art is ripe for rediscovery, and this book reaffirms his status as a key figure in 20th-century American photography.

Keith F. Davis is senior curator of photography at The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. Michael Torosian is an artist, author, and owner of Lumiere Press, Toronto. 

"Whatever else it's got, this book is full of heart. Absolutely a masterpiece. Just a glorious, beautiful book, genuinely moving as well as thoroughly enjoyable. I absolutely love it."—Mike Johnston, The Online Photographer