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Bevan Davies praised in Geoff Dyer's new book, See/Saw: Looking at Photographs 2010-2020

In an April 30, 2021 review in The Wall Street Journal, of Geoff Dyer’s new book, See/Saw: Looking at Photographs 2010-2020, Christoph Irmscher writes:

"Geoff Dyer begins his rich new collection of essays with a consideration of “Saint-Cloud, 1924,” a magical picture by the French photographer Eugène Atget (1857-1927), quietly reflective in the way some Rilke poems are… Mr. Dyer’s essays remain focused on just one photograph, each of them beautifully reproduced by Graywolf Press. Intriguingly, the timeless statues of Saint-Cloud lurk behind many of Mr. Dyer’s choices, which reveal a predilection—handled with a degree of self-conscious irony—for impersonal structures, such as houses, streets, and monuments. Thus, Mr. Dyer praises the work of American photographer Bevan Davies (born 1941), whose photographs, in Mr. Dyer’s understanding, exemplify how buildings, if they had cameras, would take pictures of each other."

See/Saw shows how photographs frame and change our perspective on the world. Taking in photographers from early in the last century to the present day — including artists such as Eugène Atget, Vivian Maier, Roy DeCarava, and Alex Webb — the celebrated writer Geoff Dyer offers a series of moving, witty, prescient, surprising, and intimate encounters with images.

Dyer has been writing about photography for thirty years, and this tour de force of visual scrutiny and stylistic flair gathers his lively, engaged criticism over the course of a decade. A rich addition to Dyer’s The Ongoing Moment, and heir to Roland Barthes’s Camera Lucida, Susan Sontag’s On Photography, and John Berger’s Understanding a Photograph, See/Saw shows how a photograph can simultaneously record and invent the world, revealing a brilliant seer at work. It is a paean to art and art writing by one of the liveliest critics of our day.