The Appalachian Collection by Shelby Lee Adams
Signed First Editions, First Printings, 4 Volumes
This is a rare set of Shelby Lee Adam’s critically acclaimed “Appalachian Collection” consisting of signed first edition, first printings of “Appalachian Portraits”, “Appalachian Legacy”, “Appalachian Lives”, and “Salt & Truth. Viewed as a whole, these four books illuminate Adams compelling drive to document the lives of the people of Appalachia and to enrich and challenge outside perceptions of the region. The 290 images in the 4 books display the depth and breath of his remarkable talents as a portrait photographer and truly capture a slice of America that is remarkable. The noted photography critic and author Vicki Goldberg in here wonderful essay on Adam’s Appalachian works wrote, “Adams looks at a difficult subject with an artist's eye. At their best, the complicated and ambiguous pictures in this book are an uncommon blend of humanity, reportage, and art, an Appalachia most of us thought we knew seen through eyes that tell us that maybe we didn't know it so well after all … Just as his photographs portray the richness and complexity of Appalachians, Adams's accompanying text explains how he attains the level of trust that allows him to continue photographing these people. He tells why the region continues to fascinate him. His reflections give context to the images and a sense of the lives lived outside of the photographic frame. His honesty about his interaction with his subjects, their sometimes wary reactions to him, and his personal history in the region infuse the photographs with an intimacy that only an Appalachian insider such as Adams could achieve.”
The following are the details on the four books:
First Edition, First Printing published by the University Press of Mississippi, Jackson in 1993. Measuring approximately 10” x 9.5” and containing 50 black and white photographs, the book is bound in brown cloth boards in a photographically illustrated dust jacket. The condition of the book is FINE. The condition of the dust jacket is FINE- with very minimal surface wear. The book has been boldly signed by Shelby Lee Adams on the title page. From the publisher, “Here in pictures and in words the photographer Shelby Lee Adams and the novelist Lee Smith explore their unique Appalachian homeland. Their photographic and literary art confronts you and draws you intimately close with images charged with powerful feelings. Though the people of Appalachia have been photographed often--by Lange, Evans, Bourke-White, Ulman and others--there has not been, until now, a photography book of this genre from an insider's perspective."
First Edition, First Printing published by University Press of Mississippi, Jackson in 1998. Measuring approximately 11” x 8.5” and containing 80 black and white photographs, the book is bound in black cloth boards in a photographically illustrated dust jacket. The condition of the book is FINE and the condition of the dust jacket FINE- minimal surface wear. The book is boldly signed by Shelby Lee Adams on the title page. From the publisher, “Appalachian Portraits, Adams's previous, acclaimed monograph was only the beginning of his study of the Appalachian homeland. In images as revealing and complex as those earlier photographs, Legacy is a collection of images that he has made for nearly twenty-five years visiting the same nine families. The accompanying text relates their stories and Adams's relationship with them.”
First Edition, First Printing published by the University Press of Mississippi, Jackson in 2003. Measuring approximately 11” x 10.5” and containing 80 black and white photographs, the book is bound in black cloth boards in a photographically illustrated dust jacket. The book and dust jacket are in FINE condition. The book has been boldly signed by Shelby Lee Adams on the title page. From the publisher, “This is the third book by Adams on the Appalachian region of Kentucky, his home state. In Appalachian Lives, he continues to photograph the people that are dear to him, the subjects of his work for over 25 years. In this most recent group of images, the ever-present outside world—the world of Wal-Mart and fast food—reveals it's steady penetration of all levels of society. Adams' candid text discusses his fascination with the region and his working methods, particularly how he achieves the high level of trust with which these families endow him. A brilliant portrait of a rural people.”
Salt & Truth
First Edition, First Printing published by Candela Books, Richmond, Virginia in 2011. Measuring approximately 12” x 9.75” and containing 80 black and white photographs, the book is bound in black cloth boards in a photographically illustrated dust jacket. The condition of the book and dust jacket is FINE. The book is boldly signed by Shelby Lee Adams on the title page. From the publisher, “Salt & Truth is the fourth book from American photographer Shelby Lee Adams [1950-present]. This collection of 80 new photographs, taken over the past eight years, continues a project the artist has been working on now for over 30 years. Together these powerful images of the hollow dwellers of eastern Kentucky, represent a singular access to a world that is historically not very trusting of outsiders, by a photographer who is widely recognized as a master of the medium.
Photograph of the four book covers, an example of the signature page from one of the books, and examples of photographs contained in the books appear in the photo section of the listing.