Documentary as Art

While working in the stacks the other day I stumbled upon this fantastic book of photography, West of Last Chance. Now, I had seen this title many times when walking past and I always wondered what it referred to. This time I picked it up and was blown away by the scope and beauty of this collection.

Having grown up in Colorado I know all about the desolate beauty of a High Plains desert. The photographer Peter Brown really captures the breathtaking beauty of wide open vistas. As the book says "You have to know how to look at this country. You have to slow down. It isn't pretty, but it's beautiful."

While reading the blurb on the front flap I learned that this book was in part funded by the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University. Inspired by the work of Dorothea Lange and Paul Taylor in An American Exodus: A Record of Human Erosion, the Center funds collaborations between photographers and documentary writers working in the early stages of a project like American Eoxdus.

 Here's a list of the prizewinners that DPL owns:


I hope you are as fascinated by these works as I am.


Written by Emily on June 13, 2011


Anonymous on June 18, 2011



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