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Critical Focus

I have a small supply of mint-condition copies (still in the original shrink-wrap) of this 1995 collection of essays, selected from my “Letter from” series that appeared between 1989 and 1993 in Photo Metro, the San Francisco-based magazine.

$35 per copy, including shipping. Signed, dated, and inscribed upon request.

From the reviews:

“At his best, photography critic A. D. Coleman is everything one would want. He draws not only from a wealth of knowledge about how photography is made and who makes it but also from his own extensive readings in subjects beyond photography. He is a lucid thinker and an elegant writer.

“All this is evident in Coleman’s new book of essays, Critical Focus. In the pieces, which first appeared in the San Francisco-based magazine Photo Metro, Coleman ruminates on the big issues and big names in photography of the last five years. In praise, Coleman’s prose is transcendent; in reproof, he does not mince words. . . . One hopes that in future volumes there will be more of Coleman’s dry, laconic prose. ”

— Margarett Loke, ARTnews, April 1996

“A. D. Coleman . . . has long been one of our most intelligent commentators on photography. And for clear, unencumbered, jargon-free writing that assumes the intelligence of the audience, he has no equal. … Critical Focus … illustrates the rich understanding that Coleman has brought to the medium. … His short pieces burst with energy, like an Andrei Codrescu commentary, and they are equally mordant, funny, and insightful. His longer works brim with ideas and clear explication. … [R]equired reading for anyone who values understanding photography in contemporary culture.”

— Stephen Perloff, The Photo Review, Summer 1995

“Coleman is a rigorous critic with a deep, insightful knowledge of the method, theory, and history of photography. Unlike much contemporary criticism that often lapses into dense ideological analysis that is inaccessible to the uninitiated, Coleman’s text delights with lucid, well-reasoned analyses of a variety of imagery. … Recommended for all collections.”

Library Journal, September 1995

” The book was recently awarded the I.C.P. Infinity Award for Writing on Photography — and rightly so. Coleman beautifully uses his sly wit and social commentary to give us perspective on the artists and their work.”

Petersen’s Photographic, August 1996

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