On reading

On reading, Trujillo, Spain

© 2011 – philip vergeylen – all rights reserved

‘On reading’ is the title of a small book of one of my favourite photographers, André Kertész. This small book was first published in 1971 and became one of his signature works.

The photographs, taken between 1920 and 1970, capture people reading in many parts of the world. Readers in every conceivable place – on rooftops, in public parks, on crowded streets, waiting in the wings of the school play – are caught in a deeply personal, yet universal, moment.

Kertész’s images celebrate the absorptive power and pleasure of this solitary activity and speak to readers everywhere.

I made this photo of a reading man, sitting on the stairs on the Plaza Mayor, in the historical centre of Trujillo, in Spain.


6 thoughts on “On reading

  1. It’s going to be more and more difficult in the future to find people actually reading a book…hope I can remain one of them. What’s so personal about an electronic reader, anyway? Something gets lost for me when I can’t flip the pages…

  2. I love Kertész, but I’ve never tracked down a copy of this book – I really should do so. I think your picture does a good job or portraying someone immersed in their book, oblivious to their surroundings.

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