Selected as one of the Best Books of 2013 by Darius Himes
As one of today’s most influential political photographers, Christopher Anderson has enjoyed rare behind-the-scenes access to the inner workings of American political theater. Stump collects his color and black-and-white photographs from recent campaign trails-particularly from the 2012 Obama/Romney contest-that scrutinize the highly rehearsed rhetorical masks of, among others, Barack and Michelle Obama, Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan, Newt Gingrich, Bill Clinton and others (including audience members at rallies). Removed from the context of reportage and sequenced here, these images accumulate a mesmerizing quality that is both frightening and hilarious. They are interspersed with other campaign-trail images, of fireworks, flags and other props of high pomp that attend such occasions. John Heilemann, author of the New York Times bestseller Game Change (on the 2008 presidential race), contributes an essay on Anderson’s work.
"Anderson's closely cropped portraits of American politicians caught in the act of giving their "stump speeches" is a visual tour de force. Anderson enhances the effect by including formally identical portraits of audience members, a syrupy dose of color to balance out the intense, sweaty, grainy black and white images. Helmar Lerski's portraits made in the first part of the 20th century come to mind, but Anderson's feel more like a slap than a caress. Powerful." -- Darius Himes