I finished "California and the West" a few minutes ago. It was not good bedtime reading though. Instead of leading to sleep, it led to thought and more thought.
Here are 70 year old photos and words that really do stand up to time. I've noticed that repeatedly with Weston's work. It has a quality that lasts. It both captures a moment and has the ability to transcend time. I like that. So much of photography that I see today, just seems like the "flavor of the month." How many "fifteen minutes of fame" does it take to equal seventy years? Twenty-four million, five hundred and forty-six thousand, six hundred and twenty-four.
So I talk about Weston, and watch the boredom of some of my younger photographer friends. They have been convinced that Modernism (and certainly technical mastery in general) is dead. It's been replaced with Mordencage and uneven wetplate. I admit that I fail to understand the point of view.
Edward Weston died six years before I was born. "California and the West" was published twenty-four years before I was born. As far as I'm concerned, it is as original and valuable now as it was then. Good art lasts, and its value exceeds the "flavor of the month."