Sarah Moon: Now and Then

Image of Sarah Moon: Now and Then
Release Date: 
April 11, 2016
Kehrer Verlag
Reviewed by: 

The most pertinent fact about Sarah Moon: Now and Then is that this is not some glossy table coffee table book but rather a very scholarly, if not erudite, examination of Sarah Moon’s body of work as well as insight into what makes this artist who she is. If you don’t recognize her name she is a pivotal figure in the evolution of 20th century or modern photography and film making. Once readers are engaged they will find out why she is a distinct and unique artist.

“I never photograph reality.”  
—Sarah Moon

For those unfamiliar with the career of Sarah Moon, she was a model turned photographer turned filmmaker who developed an enigmatic way of seeing all subjects including fashion. There are a series of interviews with her that give the reader great insight into the creative and cerebral instincts that guided Moon throughout her career.

“The photos that interest me most, I can’t say why I took them. I think my gift is that I still work with a certain amount of unconsciousness.”
—Sarah Moon

The reader needs to be totally aware that the text is not light reading and requires some degree of concentrations and focus. The foreword alone is somewhat stultifying in its didactic language and content. The book also serves as catalog for her first comprehensive retrospective, which just ended in Hamburg at House of Photography at the Deichtorhallen; it should also be noted that the primary focus is on her filmwork but not restricted to only that facet of her career.

There is no question that Sarah Moon: Now and Then offers something special, but the price is some plain heavy reading.