Brian Brake: Lens on the World

Author(s): Athol McCredie

Photography | NZ Non-Fiction

Brian Brake (1927-1988) was New Zealand's most well-known and internationally successful photographer, known worldwide for photo essays like Monsoon (1961) and locally for the book New Zealand, Gift of the Sea (1963).
Twenty years after his death, however, Brake's vast body of work remains unseen - or critically considered - in its entirety.
What was Brake's background and what were his influences? What sort of photographer was he? What was his popular reputation based on? How has he been he perceived by the generations of contemporary photographers who have followed him? What was his significance at the time, and what is it in a lasting sense?
The Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa holds the Brian Brake collection, comprising 110,000 images, and in 2010 will mount a major retrospective exhibition which, together with this publication, provides a unique opportunity to ask these questions - and examine Brake's legacy - alongside his life and work and the context within which he operated. First published October 2010.


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Shortlisted for New Zealand Post Book Awards: Illustrated Non-Fiction 2011.

Chapter 1: Formative experiences: 1945-1955 / Lissa Mitchell -- Chapter 2: The roving photojournalist: 1954-1959 / John B. Turner -- Chapter 3: The colour picture essay: 1960-1980 / Gael Newton -- Chapter 4: Looking at New Zealand: 1960-1988 / Peter Ireland -- Chapter 5: Object photography: 1966-1988 / Damian Skinner.

General Fields

  • : 9781877385643
  • : Te Papa Press
  • : Te Papa Press
  • : October 2010
  • : New Zealand
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Athol McCredie
  • : Hardback
  • : 770.92
  • : 352
  • : colour & b/w illustrations