photo: V. Maier

... At the head of Bannos’s first chapter is a diagram showing the dispersal of Maier’s estate... 

...The Maier industry had already been percolating for months before someone on a Web forum raised the question of legality—of who owned her work, and who was authorized to reproduce it...

..."In other words,” writes Bannos, “the estate was requesting that John Maloof and Jeffrey Goldstein provide copies of images from their collections so the public administrator could sue them for copyright infringement.” The reaction, at least among certain photo-world bloggers, followed the topsy-turvy logic of current American populism: that David Deal and by extension the state were “stealing” Maier’s work from the people, rather than the other way around.
Maloof and to a lesser extent Goldstein threw themselves into the project of creating Maier’s public profile—Maloof’s life changed radically as a result—but they were not exactly disinterested parties. The fact that Maier was still alive when the project began gives the case a certain ghoulish quality, for all that the timing was accidental and at least at first unknown to everyone involved. That she was a woman, and one who in many ways lived on the margins of society, adds further wrinkles to the case. That Maier had not made any arrangements for the disposal of her estate, that she did not edit her work to any serious extent, that she did not seem to value her images in quite the same way that most subsequent viewers have—all these raise ethical issues of various sizes. 
But who would benefit if only the images she printed herself were allowed to circulate?... 
from Camera Obscura, book review of Bannos' book at Bookforum

Vivian Maier: 

A Photographer's Life and Afterlife



$35.00 List Price

For more info visit: Amazon • IndieBound • Barnes & Noble

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