Best of the Best of 2011

One of the books selected for a Japan-only "Best Photobooks of 2011" list© Dan Abbe

It seems like the dust has finally settled on the recaps of 2011 in photography. Most of this writing took the form of lists of photography books, which makes a lot of sense--everyone can experience a book in exactly the same way. Of course, we threw our own hat into the ring with our Best Photo Books of 2011 list, but there were plenty of other efforts online. So many, in fact, that blogger Marc Feustel took it upon himself to analyze them all, and distill everything into one easily digestible post. All told, he compiled 52 separate "Best of 2011" lists, and determine that Christian Patterson's "Redheaded Peckerwood" was the consensus top pick of the year. (Here's a video preview of the book.) Yukio Watabe's "A Criminal Investigation," which Marc also profiled for American Photo, was tied for second place.

Of course, this meta-list only gathers together the opinion of photography bloggers, who certainly do not represent everyone who's interested in photography! There are so many other ways to think about the best books of 2011, and Marc chose to follow up by soliciting some picks from Japan. The result is a post that introduces about 30 more photobooks that were previously unpicked. If anything, these efforts might illustrate just how many excellent books did _not _make it onto a year-end list. There are probably enough books in here to keep you busy until about, oh, the end of this year--when you can catch your breath and wait for the next round of lists to roll in.