Arthur Mole – Living Photographs (2015)


In 1917 as the United States were entering World War I, the English photographer, Arthur Mole (1889-1983) created a new type of iconography in service of the promotion of American nationalism. With the help of his colleague, John D. Thomas, he created sprawling photographic compositions made up by arranging thousands of men into particular shapes on the ground. These compositions represent symbols of American society, including the American flag in the shape of a shield, the emblem of the Marines, the Statue of Liberty and a profile portrait of Woodrow Wilson, among others. The book brings together these avant-garde propaganda photographs, which Mole called Living photographs despite the individual being rendered invisible in favour of the crowd. The book also contains a section which showcases a series of details reframed and enlarged from within the original photographs. By modifying the scale of the photographed bodies, which at times renders results almost abstract, these fragments invite the reader to reinterpret Mole’s photographs. The book is also accompanied by Louis Kaplan’s essay titled «Photographic Patriotism: Arthur Mole’s Living Photographs».

RVB Books, France, 2015. 240 x 330 mm. Softcover, 128 pages.

First edition. Condition: New. Texts in English.

1 in stock


ISBN: No ISBN Author: Title: Unknown Title Publisher: RVB Books Language: Unknown language