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Paperback

Volkswagen: A Week at the Factory

One of the best-known and best-loved cars ever manufactured, the VW Bug was a symbol for decades of a casual lifestyle replete with breezy outings. But the 71 duotone photographs in this elegant paperbound volume offer a striking contrast to this populist impression. In 1953, photographer Peter Keetman spent a week at a Volkswagen factory in Wolfsburg, Germany, emerging with a collection of remarkable images that, although rejected by the Volkswagen publicists, transform the parts of the popular car into works of abstract art gleaming stacks of hoods and fenders trace sinuous lines reminiscent of Edward Weston's seashells; bolts of cable look like exotic plants; sheet metal takes on a life of its own. Arranged in the order of the car's manufacturing process, accompanied by three essays on photography and Volkswagen production, Volkswagen: A Week at the Factory is a landmark in the history of industrial photography and a timeless look at a contemporary icon.