What We Are Reading Today: Walker Evans: Starting from Scratch by Svetlana Alpers

What We Are Reading Today: Walker Evans: Starting from Scratch by Svetlana Alpers
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Updated 30 October 2020

What We Are Reading Today: Walker Evans: Starting from Scratch by Svetlana Alpers

What We Are Reading Today: Walker Evans: Starting from Scratch by Svetlana Alpers

Walker Evans (1903–75) was a great American artist photographing people and places in the US in unforgettable ways. He is known for his work for the Farm Security Administration, addressing the Great Depression, but what he actually saw was the diversity of people and the damage of the long Civil War.
In Walker Evans, renowned art historian Svetlana Alpers explores how Evans made his distinctive photographs. Delving into a lavish selection of Evans’s work, Alpers uncovers rich parallels between his creative approach and those of numerous literary and cultural figures, locating Evans within the wide context of a truly international circle.
Alpers demonstrates that Evans’s practice relied on his camera choices and willingness to edit multiple versions of a shot, as well as his keen eye and his distant straight-on view of visual objects. Illustrating the vital role of Evans’s dual love of text and images, Alpers places his writings in conversation with his photographs. She brings his techniques into dialogue with the work of a global cast of important artists—from Flaubert and Baudelaire to Elizabeth Bishop and William Faulkner—underscoring how Evans’s travels abroad in such places as France and Cuba.


What We Are Reading Today: Four Kings

What We Are Reading Today: Four Kings
Updated 23 January 2021

What We Are Reading Today: Four Kings

What We Are Reading Today: Four Kings

Author: George Kimball

By the late 1970s, boxing had lapsed into a moribund state and interest in it was on the wane. In 1980, however, the sport was resuscitated by a riveting series of bouts involving an improbably dissimilar quartet: Sugar Ray Leonard, Marvelous Marvin Hagler, Thomas Hearns and Roberto Duran.
These four boxers brought out the best in each other, producing unprecedented multimillion-dollar gates along the way. Each of the nine bouts between the four men was memorable in its own way and at least two of them — Leonard-Hearns I in 1981 and Hagler-Hearns in 1985 — are commonly included on any list of the greatest fights of all time. The controversial outcome of another — the 1987 Leonard-Hagler fight — remains the subject of heated debates amongst fans to this day.
Leonard, Hagler, Hearns and Duran didn’t set out to save boxing from itself in the post-Ali era, but somehow they managed to do so. In Four Kings, award-winning journalist George Kimball documents the remarkable effect they had on the sport and argues that we will never see their likes again.