The Photographer and the President
A new angle on Lincoln and his legacy, exploring the rich and suggestive dialogue between art, image, and politics at the time of the Civil War. Abraham Lincoln was one of the most photographed figures of his century. Richard Lowry explores Lincoln’s association with Alexander Gardner, the man who would create the most memorable and ultimately iconic images of the president, both in his studio and on the battlefields of the Civil War. Lowry’s book is an accessible and lively narrative of this symbiotic relationship and an examination of the emerging role of the media at a moment of national transformation. Lincoln was an early adopter of photographic technology and visionary in how he used it—as FDR was with radio, JFK with television, and Obama with the internet. By highlighting this very modern aspect of such a storied presidency, Lowry opens a new door on Lincoln’s relationship to politics and celebrity just as the mass culture of the image was taking root in America.