1st Edition

Critiquing Individual Photographs within a Collective Consciousness

ISBN 9781138886070
Published August 14, 2017 by Routledge
230 Pages

USD $44.95

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Book Description

Subtext invites and encourages personal and blatantly subjective responses to photographs and analyzes the drivers behind them. During decades of participating in critiques as both student and teacher, André Ruesch has become convinced that it is the personal response to work that connects us in the most visceral and meaningful way. This book aims to encourage and educate viewers how to read and understand photographs on a deeper level, honoring and validating their responses to photographs. This book seeks to vitalize students in the photography classroom. Rather than a dense tome of theory, this is an accessible guide to taking individual ownership of—and enjoying—the visual experience.

To be visually literate is comparable to being linguistically literate. Such literacy is necessary to engender a deeper understanding and valuation of culture: both types of literacy create, enrich, define and historically document the expression of one individual to be shared by all.    

Table of Contents


II - QUOTES: by Sir Ken Robinson and Eugenia Parry



V - FOREWORD: An interview of Patrick Nagatani by Ryoichi p. 000

VI - INTRODUCTION: For whom this book is meant and how to use it p. 000

VII - PROLOGUE: The periodic table p. 000

1 - THE VELVET HAMMER: The potency of elements p. 000

2 - THE PERSONAL GALAXY: The symbol p. 000

3 - JUST FASHION: A question of identity p. 000

4 - NIKE AND THE BUTTERFLY: The reversed stereotype p. 000

5 - STAYING IN LINE: Conductivity p. 000

6 - POLITICS: The metaphoric landscape p. 000

7 - HENRY’S TALE: The photographic fable p. 000

8 - MOMENT BY MOMENT: Elapsed time - Eadweard Muybridge revisited p. 000

9 - THE DROWNED GUN: Time as poetry p. 000

10 - SPLIT AGAIN: The reversed connection p. 000

11 - THE OTHER HALF: Water and air p. 000

12 - THE ORIGINAL: Please touch the art p. 000

13 - THE TYRANNY OF BORDERS: The half-life of elements p. 000

14 - THE HOLY ROSARY: Belonging p. 000

15 - A CONVERSATION WITH GOD: The white elephant in the room p. 000

16 - SUPERSTRUCTURE: Conflation p. 000

17 - LADY LIKE: Body language p. 000

18 - RECYCLING: The image ecology approach p. 000

19 - APPROPRIATION: Reinterpretation p. 000

20 - DAD: Titled versus untitled p. 000

21 - SPEED AND STOICISM: The nature of the elements p. 000

22 - REFLECTION: The literally and the figuratively p. 000

23 - SKY VIEW: Upside down p. 000

24 - BLOOD IS BLOOD: Assumption p. 000

25 - HYPNAGOGIA: Viewpoint p. 000

26 - HARMONIA: Rendering the invisible p. 000

27 - SNAP: Breaking point p. 000

28 - RECOGNITION: The need for invisibility p. 000

29 - BIG AND SMALL: How we give thanks p. 000

30 - AMMO AND THE HAPPY MEAL: Be theatrical p. 000

31 - THE SPIDER AND THE NET: Catch and caught p. 000

32 - DIRTY JOBS: A deceptive comedy of errors p. 000

33 - WHAT IS TO COME: Dreaming p. 000

34 - THE ANGEL AND THE WASP: The order of the elements p. 000

35 - IN THE END: Together p. 000

VIII - EPILOGUE: Florence + The Machine p. 000

IX - IF LOST OR LONELY: Get your work out there p. 000

X - QUICK REFERENCE: Artists in alphabetical order p. 000

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André Ruesch has been an active photographer for over thirty years. After receiving a BA in photographic studies at  Edinburgh Napier University, Scotland, he moved to Albuquerque to receive his MA and MFA for graduate studies in photography at the University of New Mexico. While there, his main mentors were Patrick Nagatani, Betty Hahn, and Eugenia Parry.

Ruesch’s work has been internationally exhibited in museums and galleries and published in the British Journal of Photography, Art in America, and Asian Art News among others.

He lives in Massachusetts, where he is a Professor at the Lesley University College of Art and Design & the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.