New York: Museum of Modern Art, 1981-85. 1st Edition. 4 vols., quarto, publisher's burgundy buckram cloth, spines gilt, upper boards blind stamped, tan endpapers, original photo-illustrated dust jackets.
Complete four-volume set of the Museum of Modern Art’s essential survey of French flaneur and pioneering documentary photographer Eugène Atget. After acquiring an immense collection of prints and plates in 1968 from American photographer and proponent of Atget’s work Berenice Abbott (she had purchased them from Atget’s estate 40 years prior), the museum’s photography department undertook a massive effort to chronologize and reconstruct the archive for presentation. Each of the four volumes here was published in conjunction with an exhibition of the 19th-century photographer’s work. Illustrated with hundreds of duotone plates; with text detailing Atget’s longterm, obsessive project of documenting "vieux Paris" by head of MoMA's photography department John Szarkowski and curator of the Metropolitan Museum of Art's photography department Maria Morris Hambourg; with extensive endnotes and bibliography. Slight dustiness to cloth of vol. III; unclipped dust jackets with light wear and creasing, heavier to vols. II and III. Very good or better overall. Item #3298