Author(s): Sally Mann
In collaboration with the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts and accompanying its landmark 2010 exhibition, Aperture is pleased to publish "Sally Mann: The Flesh and The Spirit", the first in-depth look at this world-renowned artists approach to the body. Throughout her career, Mann has fearlessly pushed her exploration of the human form, tackling the often difficult subject matter and making unapologetically sensual images that are simultaneously bold and lyrical. This beautifully produced publication includes Manns earliest platinum prints from the late 1970s, Polaroid still lifes, early color work of her children, haunting landscape images, recent self-portraits, and nude studies of her husband. The series document Manns interest in the body as principal subject, with the associated issues of vulnerability and mortality lending an elegiac note to her images. In bringing them together, author and curator John Ravenal examines the varied ways in which Manns experimental approach, including ambrotypes and gelatin silver prints made from collodian wet-plate negatives, moves her subjects from the corporeal to the ethereal. "Sally Mann: The Flesh and The Spirit", a one-of-a-kind publication, is a must for any serious library of photographic literature, students, scholars, collectors, and others interested in her work. Ravenal has written a comprehensive introduction as well as individual entries on each series, and essays by David Levi Strauss ("Eros", "Psyche", and the "Mendacity of Photography") and Anne Wilkes Tucker ("Living Memory") add different, but equally illuminating perspectives to this work.