BRANDT, Bill. The English At Home. London: B.T. Batsford, Ltd., 1936.
4to.,Original paper-covered boards printed in yellow, red and black; lacking the extremely rare acetate dustwrapper; illustrated with b/w photographs to upper and lower boards, as well as the endpapers; 8pp., 63 b/w photographs reproduced in gravure; boards faded to a light cream colour, yet retaining the bright red lettering; slightly bumped at corners and rubbed along spine; a few minor chips to head and foot; internally clean and bright.
First edition, with an introduction by Raymond Mortimer.
Brandt was a British photographer and photojournalist known for his images of British society. The English at Home is his first book and another, A Night in London, soon followed in 1938. A few years later, in 1940, he was commissioned by the Ministry of Information to document the Underground bomb shelters during The Blitz.
Brandt's celebration of quintessential British life shows him to "not only be an artist but an anthropologist. He seems to have wandered about England with the detached curiosity of a man investigating the customs of some remote and unfamiliar tribe." Together with views of a Buckingham Palace guard and double-decker buses crossing London Bridge, he contrasts desolate East-End playgrounds with Kensington street parties showing children in fine clothes. In doing so he manages in just 63 photographs to cover a whole cross-section of British society. He is now considered to be one of the most important British photographers of the 20th century.