Let’s talk about Annie Leibovitz’s Pilgrimage

There are books that are not as well-written as its book review. This could be one. I found this book in a search of Susan Sontag’s pilgrimage, after read New Yorker’s book review on this book, I couldn’t wait for reading this photographic book. However, it is very disappointing. 

The book is about “list”, and whoever knows Susan Sontag knows how important “list” is in the mind of Sontag. Sontag is making lists all her life. A.L. this time made her own list, and what’s more attractive is that A.L. is famous for personal portray not objects, and none of the pictures in this book is person figure. Objects make people pilgrim. But the arrangement is confusing and disturbing my reading, besides, A.L.’s writing is like giving a biography introduction to everybody. Even though, in the end of the book, Spiral Jetty offers me a bit of light in a sense of “infinity”, still I cannot like this book. 

In the beginning of the book, it was saying the purpose of this book is to fulfill the idea that A.L. and Susan Sontag shared together: “to make a “Beauty Book”“, again, people who know Sontag understand what does “Beauty” mean in her literature. But I have to say, I don’t feel intelligent in A.L.’s pilgrimage at all.



Jessica Chastain in “Work of Art” photographed by Annie Leibovitz for Vogue USA December 2013

Frederic Leighton’s Flaming June, Henri Matisse’s Odalisque with Red Culottes, Félix Vallotton’s Le Retour, Anders Zorn’s Frances Folsom Cleveland, Gustav Klimt’s Ria Munk, Vincent van Gogh’s La Mousmé, Julia Margaret Cameron’s photography.

There is always a parallel with vintage and cutting edge trend. People say fashion is like karma, as well as history. 

Photography makes painting out of date, meanwhile, more precious. 

Read Susan Sontag’s On Photography