The Pleasures of Good Photographs is an intellectual and aesthetic excursion led by Gerry Badger, one of photography’s eminent critics and popular writers. In this new volume of essays, Badger offers insight into some of his favorite images, artists, and themes, drawing upon nearly three decades of writing and thinking about photography. With deep discernment and a readable mixture of scholarly finesse and wit, Badger describes the meanings of work by dozens of photographers, from Dorothea Lange and Eugéne Atget to Martin Parr, Luc Delahaye, Susan Lipper, and Paul Graham. Among the broader topics discussed are the photobook—where Badger believes “photography sings its loudest and most complex song”—and Photoshop’s role in art-making. An interlude at the heart of the book pairs the author’s evocative meditations with nearly a dozen thought provoking images. The Pleasures of Good Photographsshowcases primarily new essays, with a few classics thrown in for good measure, making it an important addition to the canon of photographic writing.
Gerry Badger, a photography critic for nearly thirty years, is himself a photographer, as well as an architect and curator. He has written for dozens of periodicals and his previous books include The Photobook: A History, Volumes I and II, coauthored with Martin Parr, and The Genius of Photography: How Photography Has Changed Our Lives, a companion volume to the esteemed BBC television series. Badger lives in London.