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The Color of Loss: An Intimate Portrait of New Orleans after Katrina [Hardcover]

Andrei Codrescu , Dan Burkholder

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Book Description

March 1 2008
The devastation of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina has been imprinted in our collective visual memory by thousands of images in the media and books of dramatic photographs by Robert Polidori, Larry Towell, Chris Jordan, Debbie Fleming Caffrey, and others. New Orleanians want the world to see and respond to the destruction of their city and the suffering of its people-and yet so many images of so much destruction threaten a visual and emotional overload that would tempt us to avert our eyes and become numb. In The Color of Loss, Dan Burkholder presents a powerful new way of seeing the ravaged homes, churches, schools, and businesses of New Orleans. Using an innovative digital photographic technology called high dynamic range (HDR) imaging, in which multiple exposures are artistically blended to bring out details in the shadows and highlights that would be hidden in conventional photographs, he creates images that are almost like paintings in their richness of color and profusion of detail. Far more intense and poetic than purely documentary photographs, Burkholder's images lure viewers to linger over the artifacts of people's lives-a child's red wagon abandoned in a mud-caked room, a molding picture of Jesus-to fully understand the havoc thrust upon the people of New Orleans. In the deserted, sinisterly beautiful rooms of The Color of Loss, we see how much of the splendor and texture of New Orleans washed away in the flood. This is the hidden truth of Katrina that Dan Burkholder has revealed.

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"The wonder of these photographs is that they look like paintings, yet the objects depicted within them are not idealized. The dying domestic objects of the people to whom these interiors belong are no longer of this world. They have been captured on their journey to becoming indistinct trash. At the moment of their capture, they still looked like what they used to be, but moments after they were photographed, they no longer were anything. Their last breath of life is in these photographs; their only other existence is in the memories of their owners." Andrei Codrescu

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.9 out of 5 stars  7 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Poignant Heartache April 7 2008
By Literary Man - Published on
A beautiful and compelling portraiture of sorrow and loss, and the ravages of time frozen, captured in a memory.
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely amazing photos Nov. 17 2012
By Ms. R - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I recently saw Dan Burkholder at a wonderful 3 day workshop sponsored by the Center for Photographic Art. I was completely blown away by his work, and immediately went home and ordered this book. These are some of the most powerful photos I've seen by any contemporary photographer! He shared with us how he had to work with the limited natural light inside of these abandoned buildings, sometimes doing 16 min. exposures in dark, moldy places with floors that were rotted and mushy. Each photo ends up looking like a painting, with such powerful stories that you can feel the history and the tragedy of Katrina. Would recommend this more than any book I've ever bought.
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Service and A Memorable Book Jan. 18 2011
By Janie Taylor - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
The vendor responded immediately to the order and shipped promptly. I would definitely recommend this vendor and will return to his site again. The gently used book in this order is in excellent condition. It was a gift to a friend who is delighted with this memorable photography volume. The book is alive with heartbreaking images of loss and ruin filmed to producing an eerie beauty. It also triggers lingering thoughts of people who lived intimately in these settings.
5.0 out of 5 stars Dan Burkholder - Excellent Images Dec 19 2010
By G_McJim - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I wish I could afford this book but did not purchase. I have seen the actual images used in this book. They are superb photographs. If you can afford this book purchase it.
5.0 out of 5 stars Very, very special Aug. 4 2010
By Jack Kennealy - Published on
Dan Burkholder's use of HDR digital image processing is, to me, the most effective and dramatic use of HDR that I have ever seen - and I've seen a lot. In addition, Dan's selection of scenes to shoot shows immense sensitivity to the deeply personal losses experienced by people there in the wake of Katrina. This is an extraordinary book that will easily stand the test of time and forever be an outstanding record of how countless lives were so sadly trashed by Katrina.

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