A Trailblazing Photobook, with an Original Print. Tulsa [Signed, Limited First Hardcover]. Author: Larry Clark Title: Tulsa [Signed, Limited First Hardcover] Publication: New York? : [Rapoport Printing for the Author],  Edition: First hardcover edition. In Tulsa, Clark first eliminated one of the rhetorical mainstays of documentary photography: the distance of the'objective' observer from his or her subjects.
The initial shock of Tulsa was that it was photographed from inside the story, and this changed everything... Tulsa, which was Larry Clark's first book, was published by Ralph Gibson's Lustrum Press, and the book was really a collaboration between Clark and Gibson. David Levi Strauss in Roth, Book of 101 Books, p.
The world Clark takes us inside is that of white IV drug users in his hometown, the titular city in Oklahoma from the title. This is the undated first hardcover edition (the Lustrum Press published the book as a paperback original).The publication date for this book is usually given as 1979, but the 1983 review of the book in the New York Times and the reference to the "1983" hardcover edition in the Grove Press edition (published in 2000), suggest the usual dating is incorrect. The printer of this edition is different from that of the Lustrum Press version, making it likely that the other bookseller trope about this book-that it was bound from unsold copies or sheets of the first edition-is also not true.
Thanks to Brian Cassidy of Type Punch Matrix for sorting all this out. According to Cassidy, contemporary advertisements give the print run as 3000 copies. This is one of 400 of those that are numbered and signed by Clark with a laid-in original silver gelatin print of the cover image, captioned below the image, "Dead 1970", but sometimes also referred to as Billy Man (1968). The print, on 8 by 10 inch paper, has an image size of 5-7/8 by 8-5/8 inches. It is numbered, dated (1968) and signed by Clark in pencil on the back (verso).
The print slides into an archival paper envelope with a matching number written on the outside. A fine copy in a fine dust jacket. The book is numbered 217/400 and signed by Clark in ink on the title page. The print and envelope also have the same number; the print is signed by Clark on the back. Subject: First Book, Oklahoma, Photograph - Original, PHOTOGRAPHY.
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