A Collection by Bruce Bernard
An extraordinary collection of photographs spanning the history of photography.
Text by Bruce Bernard and Mark Haworth-Booth
Bruce Bernard was the leading picture editor of his generation, celebrated for his visual taste, knowledge and judgement of photography. His 30-year career culminated in the remarkable award-winning book Century, published by Phaidon in 1999.
In the 1990s he was commissioned by a private client to assemble a photographic collection, and set about acquiring a selection of images that represented, to his unique eye, the best work in the medium from the whole history of photography, ranging from nineteenth-century pioneers such as Muybridge and Fox Talbot to giants of the twentieth century such as André Kertész, Man Ray, Brassaï and Robert Frank.
These 100 photographs are the result. Bernard does not attempt to cover every period or every notable artist, but rather includes only images that truly stimulated and satisfied, and that seemed to him capable of doing so on a perpetual basis. This is a unique collection that captures, as Bernard himself put it, some of the 'magic of the medium' - photography's uncanny life-affirming qualities and unique perceptions.
Bruce Bernard (1929-2000) was Picture Editor of The Sunday Times Magazine. In 1980 he produced Photodiscovery - a highly respected account of the revolution in attitudes to photography. Bernard was Visual Arts Editor of the Saturday Independent Magazine for its first four years. He curated the exhibition 'All Human Life' at London's Barbican Centre in 1996, and was the curator of a private collection of photographs. He was the editor of the monumental Century, also published by Phaidon.
Mark Haworth-Booth is a curator and writer on photography and is Acting Head of Research at the Victoria & Albert Museum, London. His other books include British Photography (1989) and Photography: An Independent Art (1997).