1999 (New York: Graphis)
In this stunning anthology, James Balog takes us on a vivid journey through the animal world. These extraordinary photographs, few of them ever published before, explore the abundance of beauty, character, and emotional power in the other animals that share the earth with Homo sapiens. We see famous, charismatic species like elephant, lion, and wolf. We see little-known, highly endangered animals like the Wyoming toad. We experience the adrenaline of the kill and the charm of infant animals. From the elegance of his acclaimed studio portraits to the timeless beauty of a black-and-white Africa portfolio, this is a wildlife book like you’ve never seen before.
Balog’s photographs are neither romanticizing nor condescending. He breaks from traditional assumptions that nature photographers should work in a naturalistic style and depict only an idyllic Shangri-La separate from human experience. Instead, Balog challenges our preconceptions with portraits in a photographic style usually reserved for humans. He even confronts unsettling scenes in which people hunt animals. Throughout this bold work, Balog acknowledges animals as they are, wild, captive, or somewhere along the boundary between the two, and charts the ever-present tension between the natural and civilized.
This book provokes us to reconsider our natural environment and is destined to become a classic of modern photography.