William Eggleston: Flowers
Flowers is a facsimile of the third of William Eggleston’s rare artist’s books, which was first published in an edition of only fifteen by Caldecott Chubb in New York in 1978. The original Flowers was a linen-bound volume with red leather spine and corners recreating the look of a photo album, and housed in a slipcase. Within its pages were twelve original chromogenic coupler prints focused on the theme of flowers. Flowers, along with trees and other foliage inevitably feature in many of Eggleston’s photos as part of the Memphis streetscapes and interiors that are his favorite motifs. But in this book the flowers take center stage in all their mundane glory—be it a kitsch spray of gladioli and carnations in a cut-glass vase, a single rose before a box hedge, or a forlorn bunch on a white marble tomb inscribed with the word “Mama.” Along with Eggleston’s Morals of Vision, also released this season, Flowers is a further chapter in Steidl’s publication of Eggleston’s artist’s books in new editions that honor the design and spirit of the originals, while exposing their contents to the wider public for the first time.
I am at war with the obvious. - William Eggleston
Born in Memphis in 1939, William Eggleston is regarded as one of the greatest photog-raphers of his generation and a major American artist who has fundamentally changed how the urban landscape is viewed. He obtained his first camera in 1957 and was later profoundly influenced by Henri Cartier-Bresson’s The Decisive Moment. Eggleston introduced dye-transfer printing, a previously commercial photographic process, into the making of artists’ prints. His exhibition “Photographs by William Eggleston” at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 1976 was a milestone. He was also involved in the development of video technology in the seventies. Eggleston is represented in museums worldwide, and in 2008 a retrospective of his work was held at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York and at Haus der Kunst in Munich in 2009. Eggleston’s books published by Steidl include Chromes (2011), Los Alamos Revisited (2012), The Democratic Forest (2015) and Election Eve (2017).