November 2, 2011
"The essays in this book should be seen as a collection of mystery stories. Imagine finding a trunk in an attic filled with photographs. With each photograph we are thrown into an investigation. Who are these people? Why was their photograph taken? What were they thinking? What can they tell us about ourselves? What can we learn about the photographer and his motivations? Each of these questions can lead us on a winding, circuitous path. An excursion into the labyrinth of the past and into the fabric of reality."
In Believing is Seeing, Errol Morris goes behind and beyond the photographer’s lens. He presents readers with an image, or series of images, then seeks out the true relationship between the photographs and the real world they supposedly record.
He investigates the meanings of shocking scenes captured at Abu Ghraib, Roger Fenton’s photos of the Valley of the Shadow of Death during the Crimean War, pictures of children’s toys lying the rubble of homes in Beirut during Israeli-Lebanese war in 2006, and many more.
ERROL MORRIS is a world-renowned filmmaker—the Academy Award-winning director of The Fog of War and the recipient of a MacArthur “Genius” Award. His other films include Standard Operating Procedure; Mr. Death; Fast, Cheap, and Out of Control; A Brief History of Time; and The Thin Blue Line.
PAUL HOLDENGRÄBER is the Director of LIVE from the NYPL.
LIVE from the NYPL is made possible with generous support from Celeste Bartos, Mahnaz Ispahani Bartos and Adam Bartos, and the Margaret and Herman Sokol Public Education Endowment Fund.