Irwin Klein and the New Settlers: Photographs of Counterculture in New Mexico

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9780803285101: Irwin Klein and the New Settlers: Photographs of Counterculture in New Mexico

Dropouts, renegades, utopians. Children of the urban middle class and old beatniks living alone, as couples, in families, or as groups in the small Nuevomexicano towns. When photographer Irwin Klein began visiting northern New Mexico in the mid-1960s, he found these self-proclaimed New Settlers—and many others—in the back country between Santa Fe and Taos. His black-and-white photographs captured the life of the counterculture’s transition to a social movement. His documentation of these counterculture communities has become well known and sought after for both its sheer beauty and as a primary source about a largely undocumented group.
By blending Klein’s unpublished work with essays by modern scholars, Benjamin Klein (Irwin’s nephew) creates an important contribution to the literature of the counterculture and especially the 1960s. Supporting essays emphasize the importance of a visual record for interpreting this lifestyle in the American Southwest. Irwin Klein and the New Settlers reinforces the photographer’s reputation as an astute observer of back-to-the-land, modern-day Emersonians whose communes represented contemporary Waldens.


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About the Author:

The work of Irwin Klein (1933–74) is archived in the permanent collections of the George Eastman House, the Museum of Modern Art, the New York Public Library, the Brooklyn Museum, and the Palace of the Governors Photo Archives in Santa Fe. Benjamin Klein, Irwin’s nephew, teaches European and world history at California State University, East Bay. His articles on the counterculture have appeared in the New Mexico Historical Review and Casa Vogue

Review:

"The 80 photos published in Irwin Klein and the New Settlers: Photographs of Counterculture in New Mexico offer a stunning glimpse into an American subculture."—Paul Weideman, Pasatiempo (Paul Weideman Pasatiempo 2016-07-22)

"A must read."—Rio Grande Sun (Rio Grande Sun 2016-11-24)

"Klein's photographs embrace how critical not only time and place but also community are to shaping cultural identity."—The Magazine (The Magazine)

"For anyone seeking a deeper understanding of the idealism, hardships, and spirited nonconformity of the hippie tribe, Irwin Klein and the New Settlers: Photographs of Counterculture in New Mexico is a must-read—must view, really."—Charles C. Poling & Cindra Kline, New Mexico Magazine (Charles C. Poling & Cindra Kline New Mexico Magazine)

"Irwin Klein and the New Settlers, offers gritty insight into a harsher landscape of bohemian lifestyle."—Christina Waters, Good Times (Christina Waters Good Times 2016-10-05)

"Irwin Klein and the New Settlers contributes meaningfully to our understanding of how the counterculture movement played out in New Mexico, its successes and failures, and the people who formed it."—David Pike, H-New Mexico (David Pike H-New Mexico)

"Irwin Klein and the New Settlers is a fascinating look into the counterculture of northern New Mexico in the late 1960s and early 1970s. . . . The volume should find a welcome place on both bookshelf and coffee table."—Thomas B. Weyant, H-1960s (Thomas B. Weyant H-1960s)

"An important visual contribution to the growing body of counterculture scholarship."—Christopher A. Huff, Agricultural History (Christopher A. Huff Agricultural History)

“This is an evocative photo essay of the early counterculture in New Mexico. Excellent images that are enlightening.”—John Nichols, author of The Milagro Beanfield War and If Mountains Die: A New Mexico Memoir  
  (John Nichols 2015-09-14)

“[This book] reveals Irwin Klein as a perceptive interpreter of the countercultural movement as it played out in northern New Mexico in the late 1960s. Klein’s photographs of the New Settlers, which he referred to as ‘part family album’ . . . complement his grittier, darker New York City photos taken at roughly the same time, showing Klein to be an unheralded chronicler of American life.”—Stephen C. Pinson, curator, Department of Photographs, Metropolitan Museum of Art  (Stephen C. Pinson 2015-09-14)

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