Looking at Los Angeles: Edited by Marla Kennedy and Ben Stiller

Loved, hated, revered, scorned, real, imagined, L.A. is a city that jumbles the senses and avoids categorization. Nevertheless, in Looking at Los Angeles, editors Marla Hamburg Kennedy and Ben Stiller choose to embrace the city’s multiplicities via photographic tribute. Culling pictorial representations of Los Angeles from the last three-quarters of a century, Hamburg Kennedy and Stiller gathered a varied selection of 200 stunning, beautifully reproduced color and duotone depictions of the city from different eras and different points of view. Ultimately, the collection is at once a visual lesson in history, architecture, style and culture, and also a remarkable visual and written ovation to one of America’s greatest cities, one of powerful dreams and startling realities.

Not easily categorized (though easily maligned), the L.A. in these photographs registers a complex strata—the surreal urban nightmare, the endless expanse of suburbia, and the oasis of palm trees and beach. Truly and inarguably, the city is a place of paradox, of complexity and contradiction. It is one of the world’s greatest metropolises, and its most unique.

Along with the carefully chosen images by approximately 100 photographers (including Robert Adams, John Baldessari, William Claxton, Will Connell, Joe Deal, John Divola, William Eggleston, Sam Fentress, Anthony Friedkin, John Humble, Dennis Keeley, Florian Maier-Aichen, Grant Mudford, Karin A. Mueller, Catherine Opie, Ed Ruscha, Stephen Shore, Julius Schumlan, Joel Sternfeld, Timothy Street-Porter, John Swope, Andy Warhol, Julian Wasser, Robert Weingarten, Gary Winogrand, Max Yavno, and others), David L. Ulin’s essay offers a critical and loving look at the city, which the editors also describe with great affection in their prefatory note.

Additionally, a portion of the proceeds from the sale of this book will be donated to the Los Angeles Conservancy, and the organization provides an essay about the importance of saving the city’s rich architectural heritage.

Edited by Marla Kennedy and Ben Stiller, with Jane Brown and Craig Krull.
Essay by David L. Ulin and the Los Angeles Conservancy

Hardcover 14 x 11 in./250 pages/113 color and 110 duotones