Phaidon’s 55 series is pretty good: small books, well printed, with good, short, biographical essays and all the major works form a bunch of different photographers. I’ve seen them in Half Price and different places, and always avoided them, largely because “perfect bound” softcovers leave the gutter side of images virtually unreadable. But the “New-Format” hardback versions are side sewn and somewhat easier to view. To be honest, when I jumped on this Daido Moriyama book, I didn’t realize it was one of the series; had I known, I probably would’ve skipped it and been happy with my Tales of Tono reprint.

And I would’ve missed out on a great little book, for very little money.

Daido Moriyama includes a biographical essay by Kazuo Nishii, and 55 images spanning various projects from 1966 to 1994, from the fetus photographs in “Pantomime” to the Daido Hysteric series, each with informative, if somewhat distracting, notes about the circumstances around them. It’s a great, if small, overview of Moriyama’s oeuvre that invites close study.


Overall, I’d give it 3.8 stars, mostly because I prefer fully realized projects to retrospectives, and also because it’s a great value at $15 cover price (or ~$8 used, like mine).

Thanks and h/t to Dan on twitter. It’s from this tweet that I went looking, and ended up with this and Kline’s New York a couple of weeks later.

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