Intimate Gestures: Handmade Books by William Gedney surveys the photographer’s little known practice of making photobooks by hand, a pursuit he was devoted to throughout his entire career. The exhibit features seven completed photobooks and four book projects that were in-progress at the time of Gedney’s death in 1989, as well as handmade journals and related ephemera. All of the books were conceived, designed, and constructed by Gedney and correspond to his major photographic series produced in Eastern Kentucky, New York, San Francisco, and Benares, India between 1954 and 1980.
While Gedney’s photographs have been exhibited internationally at venues such as the Center for Documentary Studies, George Eastman House, the Museum of Modern Art, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Intimate Gestures is the first exhibit to highlight Gedney’s work in book form and the first time his entire collection of handmade books have been publically displayed.
The exhibition is curated by Lisa McCarty, Curator of the Archive of Documentary Arts, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.