ANIMALIA Hardcover – Apr 1 2008
No Kindle device required. Download one of the Free Kindle apps to start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, and computer.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
Rather than a traditional photo that we often see - an animal captured in its colorful habitat, Hortenstein calls our attention to detail in 64 duotone photographs. It is as if we were looking at an Asian elephant's foot or a giraffe's legs or a crane's neck through a magnifying glass.
Elisabeth Werby, Executive Director, Harvard Museum of Natural History, says it best in her informative forward: "His pictures challenge us to look more closely, to ask questions and make connections. We think about form and function; the relationship between an elephant's foot, a horse's hoof, and our own toes.........Examining these photographs, we become scientists and discoverers."
This remarkable volume holds not only the best of Hortenstein's work focusing on the images of animals but also 35 unpublished images. It is a book we find ourselves returning to again and again, to marvel and to wonder.
- Gail Cooke
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
This skilled, imaginative, idiosyncratic photographer focuses sharply on a specific part, or a detail, of an animal. Such sharp focus--as in some photographs by Edward Weston, for example--leaves the subject so that the viewer does not easily recognize it. Horenstein does not go this far, however. His aim is not to demonstrate the power of the camera to microscopically hone in on a subject in such a way that one cannot recognize it; but rather to enlarge the viewer's awareness of and connection with his subjects of animals. The photographs are a kind of synecdoche. The parts of an animal Horenstein focuses on are usually ones the viewer associates with it from seeing many ordinary photographs or films of it or from school classes in the world of nature. The viewer knows an octopus from a tentacle lined with suction cups; an Emperor penguin from its elongated white belly; a dolphin from its sleek, bulbous shape.
Horenstein is patient, too. Since "you can't tell an elephant where to stand [or] ask a skate to smile...you must be very patient and wait" for the opportunity to take a good picture, he tells in his Photographer's Note. But there's more than simply waiting for the right moment. The photographer achieves his extraordinary effects by using macro lenses and by working with grainy, black-and-white film, then developing it in sepia to give it "an old school, timeless feel." It works: The combination of photographs which are at once familiar and challenging and technicalities of film and development used make a unique, lingering impression. It is unlikely most viewers will see the animals in Horenstein's photographs ever again without seeing them or thinking about them in some respect as they were led to see and consider them with these photographs.
There is great variety in the subjects, but a common simplifying approach to all of them.
Lighting and cropping transform these creatures to magical images and lead the viewer to
seeing them in new and unusual ways.