Serpentine (Hardcover)

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Serpentine Cover Image
By Mark Laita, William Vollmann (Introduction by)
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Staff Reviews

To some, the sight of a snake triggers terror and fear. Rest assured, these colorful, undulating beauties are safe to hold in your hands now that they have been captured on film by nature photographer extraordinaire Mark Laita. Each image looks like calligraphy and one has to marvel at the patience and skill necessary in waiting for the subjects to strike that perfect pose. The snakes are exquisite in every detail, each with a signature color, pattern, and texture that range from sleek, jet black to a rough, intricate mosaic reminiscent of ancient Rome. The introductory essay by National Book Award winner William T. Vollmann reflects societal perceptions of serpents as well as his own. Sporadically peppered through the book are philosophical quotes regarding evil and enemies. Perhaps after viewing these spectacular photos, that terror and fear may transform into awe and respect. -- Cheryl Ryan

— From July 2013


Photographer Mark Laita unveils a pantheon of spectacular snakes in this electrifying collection. Inciting both allure and alarm, shining pastel pythons and vibrant green vipers slither across the pages. An illuminating essay by William T. Vollmann accompanies the images, delving into the associations with snakes that haunt our collective imagination.
From the iridescent blue Malaysian coral snake to the candy-cane-striped albino Honduran milk snake, the aptly named beautiful pit viper, and the gleaming black mamba, the world's most dangerous and gorgeous snakes are pictured in "Serpentine," showing off their fascinating colors and textures--as well as the sensual forms their movement creates. Through Laita's lens, there is nothing they can do, no position they can take, that fails to be anything but mesmerizing.

About the Author

Mark Laita has spent most of his career photographing nature and American cultures. His work has been exhibited at many galleries in the United States and Europe. Laita is also the author of Abrams' Sea. He lives in Los Angeles. William T. Vollmann is a novelist, journalist, short story writer, essayist, and winner of the National Book Award. He lives in Sacramento.
Product Details
ISBN: 9781419706301
ISBN-10: 1419706306
Publisher: ABRAMS
Publication Date: February 26th, 2013
Pages: 200
Language: English