The Photographs of Ralston Crawford Keith F. Davis

Publication date:
22 Jan 2019
Nelson Atkins
204 pages: 279 x 279mm
18 color + 148 b-w illus.
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Best known for his modernist paintings and prints, the multitalented artist Ralston Crawford (1906–1978) maintained a deep and intensive interest in photography throughout his career, using the camera as a tool of both documentary and artistic expression. This exquisitely produced publication provides a fresh, comprehensive look at Crawford’s photographs from 1938 through the mid-1970s, including both well-known works and previously unpublished images. Some of his photographic images served as the basis for paintings and prints, but many more were made for their own sake as photographs, capturing a wide variety of subjects, from pristine industrial forms to the vibrant street life and musical culture of New Orleans. This volume locates Crawford’s photographic production in the context of his overall artistic career and within the creative currents of his time, enhancing our understanding of Crawford as an artist and serving as the best and most up-to-date study of his photographs. 

Keith F. Davis is senior curator of photography at The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City.