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Babbette Hines

ISBN 9781568983813
Publication date 10/1/2002
5.87 x 8.25 inches (14.9 x 21.0 cm), Hardcover
224 pages, 750 b/w illustrations
Rights: World; Carton qty: 28; (-9.9)

This book is Out of Print


In 1925 the Siberian immigrant Anatol Josepho had an idea for a small curtain-enclosed booth where people could take affordable portraits anonymously and automatically. The photobooth was born. Within 20 years there were more than 30,000 in the United States alone, an explosive growth due largely to World War II, as soldiers and loved ones exchanged photos, hoping to cling to memories or moments in a world turned upside down. But by the 1960s the advent of Polaroid photography spelled the doom of the "four strip" that had become a fixture at arcades and drugstores everywhere.

The recent resurgence of photo sticker machines has recaptured the fun and intimacy of the photobooth. With no photographer to please, people are at liberty to be whoever they like: brave or sexy, cocksure or wise, without fear of censure or ridicule. Free in the certainty of their solitude, families, couples young and old, best friends, and individual after individual have presented to the camera both real and imagined selves for three-quarters of a century.

Photobooth presents over 700 such photographs from the last 75 years, images at turns spontaneous and uninhibited, often goofy, and occasionally touching. It is a fascinating portrait of everyday people and a testament to the ongoing fascination with both the process and the result.

Babbette Hines is a collector of, and dealer in, vernacular photography. She lives in Los Angeles.

Editorial Reviews

Black & White:
". . .dont expect a tacky, all laughs book. Its beautifully produced and the pictures have been expertly selected by Babbette Hines to show the full range of what the photo booth is capable of."

Candid Camera, Print:
"Hine's book is a welcome addition to a growing library of the rare, discarded, and unknown. Each obsessive collection tells us more about what we cherish and what our commonplace objects reveal about ourselves. PHOTOBOOTH manages to capture, and mirror back to us, a bit of our inner lives." — Dan Nadel

The Vancouver Sun:
"A perfect gift for that friend of your youththe one you once posed in a photo booth with."

Finders Keepers,
". . . an endlessly rewarding gem."

The Calgary Herald:
"...a surprisingly involving book...the pictures in PHOTOBOOTH are mesmerizing in their honesty and frankness."

Photo books reflect publishers qualities, San Jose Mercury-News:
"If ever there were a convincing visual argument that we have more in common than things that separate us, this is it."

Insight (UK):
"A beautifully designed celebration of almost 80 years of coin-op take-your-own machines. 700 monochrome, tinted and full-colour passport portraits are reproduced for you to examine at your leisure and maybe invent characters for, all lovingly exhumed by vernacular photo collector Hines. All human lifes within: teens goofing off, first-timer tiny tots uncertainty, the warmth of best friendships, and the hope of new relationships. Thoughtfully provided in this handsome album, the areas of white space suggest you might wish to customize it by adding your own finds. A mouth-watering thrill for all cinema-goers who fell under Amelies spell."

Camera Work, The Village Voice:
"PHOTOBOOTH is at once a rush of instant intimacy and a total immersion in the pleasures of vernacular photography. . . . with more than 700 people to choose from, youre bound to find a soul mate or two."

Snap Judgements, Uptown Magazine:
"The book features decades of faces of men, women, and children... I find myself wondering about the circumstances behind the photos, the impulse that brought them to the booth, that made them drop the coin in the slot as they posed for the camera."

Creative Loafing:
"a captivating collection. . ."

dont blink, Pure:
". . .spontaneous and uninhibited, often goofy, and sometimes touching."

CD Syndicated (Canadian radio):
"Princeton Architectural Press wants to make you cry with the astounding, eloquent simplicity of 2002's PHOTOBOOTH. They singlehandedly cornered a market on the intangible sadness of the photographic record."

The Philadelphia Weekly:
"These photos, both whimsical and sad, tell whole stories in four panels or less, and there's not a lie among them."

Small Faces, Frieze (U.K.):
"The classic photo booth picture records a gesture of faith, though never in our own appearance, only in a desirable future: a future together."

"The genre [photo booth photos] continues to indulge our curiosity, as this selection of over 700 photographs of husbands, sisters, sailors, and sex pots will attest."

New England Antiques Journal:
"Portraits have always fascinated people. . . . As seen in the images in PHOTOBOOTH, the privacy of the curtain-enclosed booth allows for a level of comfort and playfulness before the lens that other kinds of photos dont always have."

Commercial Appeal:
". . .no text is necessary, because the faces, the poses, the clothes, the attitudes and above all, the sense of self are captivating. . . . Its eerie, lonely, lovely and sad, like America."

Reference and Research Book News:
"Hines, a gallery owner in Los Angeles, presents a remarkable archive of anonymous faces captured on the multiple exposure strips from automatedphotobooths. A short history of the photobooth by Hines and a preface by Lawrence Wechsler are the only text. The photos speak for themselves about everyday Americanstheir hair, clothes, hat styles, and ever-increasingextraversion from the 1930s through the present."

Faces behind the curtain, The Los Angeles Times:
". . . revealing portraits of the way people come off. . . when no one is looking."

The Boston Globe:
"Hines [has] collected thousands of photobooth pictures from flea markets and friends. A selection of her trove, spanning more than 75 years, is onthe walls of the Winchester museum, and a somewhat different mix of more than 700 frames is in her book PHOTOBOOTH published by Princeton Architectural Press."

The Fort Worth Star-Telegram:
"a gallery of. . . head and shoulder portraits. . . often as telling as those taken by the finest photographers."

Photos In Minutes, The Ottawa Citizen:
"...the pictures possess a timeless quality."

Joy and Serenity At 400 ASA, Newsday:
"Remember when you and your best friend snuck off, quarters in hands, to the Woolworths photo booth while your mothers lingered at the lunch counter over franks and coffee? You didnt know it, but you were making art."

Patriot Ledger:
"The photobooth subjects, all eyes and lost stories, unknowingly intrigue their viewers...Bringing art to the masses..."

"Babette Hines PHOTOBOOTH is outstanding: a rare collection of vernacular photos which focus on photo booth images."

Strip Mining, Wired:
"Before the digital camera, before the Polaroid, the photo booth instantly captured the moment. Babbette Hines chronicles our enduring fascination with this age-old machine in PHOTOBOOTH."

Flash Back, The Seattle Times:
". . . images from the book PHOTOBOOTH capture the fun and intimacy of the booths."

I.D. Magazine:
"Babbette Hines fascinating book collates over 700 four-strip photographs, amounting to a fascinating survey of the changing (pulled) faces of the 20th Century."

Weekly Planet (Tampa, FL):
"[The pictures] capture the charm of the photo booth itselfanonymity, spontaneity and instant results."

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