The Photograph as Contemporary Art

Charlotte Cotton


In the twenty-first century, photography has come of age as a contemporary art form. Almost two centuries after photographic technology was first invented, the art world has fully embraced it as a legitimate medium, equal in status to painting and sculpture. The Photograph as Contemporary Art provides an introduction to the extraordinary range of contemporary art photography, from portraits of intimate life to highly staged directorial spectacles.

This book reproduces work from a vast span of photographers, including established artists such as Isa Genzken, Jeff Wall, Sophie Calle, Thomas Demand, Nan Goldin, and Sherrie Levine, as well as emerging talents such as Sara VanDerBeek, Rashid Johnson, Viviane Sassen, and Amalia Ulman. This new edition revitalizes previous discussions of works from the 2000s through dialogue with more recent practice. Alongside previously featured work, Charlotte Cotton celebrates a new generation of artists who are shaping photography as a culturally significant medium for our current sociopolitical climate.

A superb resource, which includes equal representation of male and female practitioners, The Photograph as Contemporary Art is a uniquely broad and diverse reflection of the field.


Charlotte Cotton


Charlotte Cotton is a writer and curator of photography, and currently curator in residence at California Museum of Photography. Her previous books include Photography is Magic (2015).