History of Photography


Introduction History of Photography (Encyclopaedia Britannica)

A World History of Photography (by Naomi Rosenblum)

The Story Behind the Pictures 1827-1991 (by Hans-Michael Koetzle)

Photographers' Dictionary
(based on "20th Century Photography - Museum Ludwig Cologne")


 

 



Photographers' Dictionary

(based on "20th Century Photography-Museum Ludwig Cologne")

 
 

 


see also:


Paul Strand.

Blind Woman, 1916


 


Paul Strand

(From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

Paul Strand (October 16, 1890 – March 31, 1976) was an American photographer and filmmaker who, along with fellow modernist photographers like Alfred Stieglitz and Edward Weston, helped establish photography as an art form in the 20th century. His diverse body of work, spanning six decades, covers numerous genres and subjects throughout the Americas, Europe and Africa.
Born in New York City to Bohemian parents, in his late teens Strand was a student of renowned documentary photographer Lewis Hine at the Ethical Culture Fieldston School. It was while on a fieldtrip in this class that Strand first visited the 291 art gallery – operated by Stieglitz and Edward Steichen – where exhibitions of work by forward-thinking modernist photographers and painters would move Strand to take his photographic hobby more seriously. Stieglitz would later promote Strand's work in the 291 gallery itself, in his photography publication Camera Work, and in his artwork in the Hieninglatzing studio. Some of this early work, like the well-known "Wall Street," experimented with formal abstractions (influencing, among others, Edward Hopper and his idiosyncratic urban vision). Other of Strand's works reflect his interest in using the camera as a tool for social reform.
Over the next few decades, Strand worked in motion pictures as well as still photography. His first film was Manhatta (1921), also known as New York the Magnificent, a silent film showing the day-to-day life of New York City made with painter/photographer Charles Sheeler. Manhatta includes a shot similar to Strand's famous Wall Street (1915) photograph. Other films he was involved with included Redes (1936) (released in the US as The Wave), a film commissioned by the Mexican government, the documentary The Plow That Broke the Plains (1936) and the pro-union, anti-fascist Native Land (1942).
In June 1949, Strand left the United States to present Native Land at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival in Czechoslovakia. It was a departure that marked the beginning of Strand’s long exile from the prevailing climate of McCarthyism in the United States. The remaining 27 years of his life were spent in Orgeval, France where, despite never learning the language, he maintained an impressive creative life, assisted by his third wife, fellow photographer Hazel Kingsbury Strand.
Although Strand is best known for his early abstractions, his return to still photography in this later period produced some of his most significant work in the form of six book ‘portraits’ of place: Time in New England (1950), La France de Profil (1952), Un Paese (featuring photographs of Luzzara and the Po River Valley in Italy, 1955), Tir a'Mhurain / Outer Hebrides (1962), Living Egypt (1969) and Ghana: an African portrait (1976).
Strand married the painter Rebecca Salsbury in 1921. He photographed Rebecca Salsbury Strand frequently, sometimes with uncommonly close compositions. Strand married Hazel Kingsbury in 1951.
The timing of Strand’s departure to France is coincident with the first libel trial of his friend Alger Hiss, with whom he maintained a correspondence until his death. Although he was never officially a member of the Communist Party, many of Strand’s collaborators were either Party members (James Aldridge; Cesare Zavattini) or were prominent socialist writers and activists (Basil Davidson). Many of his friends were also Communists or were suspected of being so (MP DN Pritt; film director Joseph Losey; Scottish poet Hugh MacDiarmid; actor Alex McCrindle). Strand was also closely involved with Frontier Films, one of more than twenty organizations that were branded as ‘subversive’ and ‘un-American’ by the US Attorney General.
Strand also insisted that his books should be printed in Leipzig, East Germany, even if this meant that they were initially prohibited from the American market on account of their Communist provenance. De-classified intelligence files, obtained under the Freedom of Information Act and now lodged at the Center for Creative Photography at the University of Arizona, reveal that Strand’s movements around Europe were closely monitored by the security services.

 


Blind Woman
1916

 


Man in a Derby
1917

 


Wall Street
1915

 


Portrait, Washington Square Park, 1916

 


Harold Greengard
Twin Lakes, Connecticut
1916

 

 


New York
1916

 


Untitled
1915

 

 


New York
1916

 


Still Life with Pear and Bowls
1916

 

 


The Family, Luzzara, Italy
1953

 

 


Portrait of a Man, South Uist
1954

 

City Hall Park, New York, 1915

 


Gaston Lachaise, 1927

 


Church, 1944

 


Lathe No. 3, Akeley Shop, New York, 1923

 


Leaves II, 1929

 


White Fence
1916

 

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