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Famous Photographers / F

Robert Farber
United States
1944
Robert Farber’s style has influenced generations of photographers. His painterly, impressionistic style captures the essence of composition in every genre, including nudes, still life, landscapes and architecture. His ten photo art books have sold over half a million copies. Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis brought Farber into Doubleday for the publication of his book “By The Sea,” which won the Art Director’s Award for color photography. Aside from numerous creative awards, Robert Farber also received the Photographer of the Year from PMA (Photographic Manufacturers Association), ASP International Award from the PPA (Professional Photographers of America) and The American Society of Photographers. This award was given to those who’ve made a significant contribution to the science and art of photography. Some previous recipients of this award include Dr. Edwin Land (inventor of the Polaroid), George Hurrell, and National Geographic. Farber’s work with nudes in fine art as well as in the commercial realm is known and respected. He has lectured for Ogilvy & Mather on the “Nude in Advertising.” ASMP requested to use Farber’s nudes as an examples of the artistic application in support of the National Endowment of Arts, after its backing of the controversial Mapplethorpe/Serrano exhibit. His book, “Farber Nudes,” was also included the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis estate collection. Farber’s fine-art photographs have been published in virtually every form. Farber has exhibited in galleries and museums world-wide. He’s lectured at the Smithsonian Institute, The George Eastman House, as well as Universities and professional groups throughout the United States, Japan, Australia and Europe. Aside from his fine art photography, Robert Farber’s work encompasses major campaigns for fashion, beauty and advertising, as well as directing for TV and film. A documentary highlighting Farber’s life and career, is in development for PBS.Source: www.farber.com Robert Farber has become renown for his depictions of the female form, although his painterly, impressionistic photographic style captures the essence of composition in many genres. Farber’s unique compositions allow the viewer to see the subject from a different perspective and in his words, “to evoke a feeling of romance. That the viewer wants to be there, be a part of it, get lost in it, whether it is a still life or landscape.” A pioneer in many ways, Robert Farber has been a leading force in the world of photography, particularly in his treatment of the subject of the nude. His work has paved the way for the female form to be shown in fine art, publishing, and advertising in a way that he describes only as “respectfully.” Delighting the viewer with his natural approach and fully embracing the female form with a fine art approach, Farber began introducing nudes in his advertising work in the 1970s. He brings the romance depicted in his fine art photographs to his renowned commercial work that has been celebrated over for their captivatingly composed settings. Robert Farber is a New York City native whose artistic career began with art shows in 1970 just after college. At the start of his career, his most moving memory was when he was forced to leave an art show since photography was not widely accepted as an art form at that time. Persisting with his passion, he was eventually discovered at an Upper East Side art show. Both a publishing company and an advertising agency approached him, allowing his fine art career and fashion photography career to take off simultaneously. Farber also brings his romantic style to landscapes through his Americana series. By forcing the viewer to look at the images in a different way the artist hopes to show the heart and soul of America; a perspective he also applies to his New York Series. He hopes that his unique take on composition and style allow the viewer to experience the excitement, nostalgia, the grit and the elegance of the city. Aside from numerous other creative awards, Robert Farber has received the distinctive Photographer of the Year award from the Photographic Manufacturers Association. He has also received the ASP International Award from the Professional Photographers of America and The American Society of Photographers. Farber has lectured at the Smithsonian Institute, The George Eastman House, as well as universities and professional groups throughout the United States, Japan, Australia and Europe. Jackie Kennedy Onassis recruited Farber during her time working for the publisher Doubleday that resulted in the publication of his notable book By the Sea which would be the first of many others. Recently, Canon presented Farber's work in a solo exhibition at Art Miami in 2013, while a documentary highlighting the artist is currently in development for PBS and will air in September of 2014 chronicling this artist’s amazingly elegant work over the past four decades.Source: Holden Luntz Gallery
Louis Faurer
United States
1916 | † 2001
Louis Faurer was an American candid or street photographer. He was a quiet artist who never achieved the broad public recognition that his best-known contemporaries did; however, the significance and caliber of his work were lauded by insiders, among them Robert Frank, William Eggleston, and Edward Steichen, who included his work in the Museum of Modern Art exhibitions In and Out of Focus (1948) and The Family of Man (1955). Growing up in Philadelphia, Faurer showed an early aptitude for illustration. He bought his first camera in 1937 from the photographer Ben Somoroff. After a couple of jobs as a photographic technician, Faurer made his way to Manhattan and into the world of fashion photography. He quickly made contacts that stood him in good stead: Robert Frank, with whom he shared a darkroom/studio and fast friendship, and Walker Evans, whom he'd long admired, who introduced him to Alexander Liberman at Vogue. Faurer did fashion photography for Vogue, Junior Bazaar, Harper's Bazaar, Mademoiselle, Elle, and Glamour, as well as assignments for Life and Look for more than twenty years. He complained that his work at Life involved too much travel, so he quit in the early 1950s. Most of the prints and negatives of his fashion work have probably been discarded, as Faurer stored them with a friend when he left the country in the late 1960s, then failed to reclaim them. It is Faurer’s personal work from the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s for which he is best remembered. He photographed the streets of New York City and Philadelphia, capturing the restless energy of urban life. His photographs show the great variety of the city's human face. As Robert Frank said in 1994: "Faurer ... proves to be an extraordinary artist. His eye is on the pulse [of New York City] - the lonely 'Times-Square people' for whom Faurer felt a deep sympathy. Every photograph is witness to the compassion and obsession accompanying his life like a shadow. I am happy that these images survive while the world keeps changing." Faurer experimented with blur, grain, double exposures, sandwiched negatives, reflections, slow film speeds, and low lighting. His 1950 photographs of Robert Frank and his new wife Mary at the San Gennaro Festival in New York are a case in point, exploiting maximum-aperture shallow depth of field, reflections and halation of out-of-focus light sources for intimate, romantic results. One of the series attracted the attention of curator Edward Steichen who included it in the world-touring Museum of Modern Art exhibition, The Family of Man, seen by 9 million visitors, and in its catalogue, which has never been out of print. As exacting in the darkroom as he was in the field, he was notorious for being a tireless perfectionist when it came to cropping and printing his work. In the mid-and late 1960s, Faurer experimented with hand-held 16 mm film, using Arriflex and Beaulieu movie cameras, filming in the streets of Manhattan, extending his still camera style into a cinematic medium. Between 1969 and 1974 he lived and worked abroad, mostly in Paris. From the mid-1970s to the mid-1980s, Faurer taught at numerous art schools and universities, including the Parsons School of Design in New York City, Yale University, the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, The New School for Social Research and Stockton State College in New Jersey. In 1984, while running to catch a New York city bus, Faurer was struck by a car and seriously injured. He never photographed again. Faurer spoke of his “intense desire to record life as I see it” as his only motivation: “As long as I’m amazed and astonished, as long as I feel that events, messages, expressions and movements are all shot through with the miraculous, I’ll feel filled with the certainty I need to keep going.” The late Walter Hopps, who was curator of American art at the Corcoran Gallery of Art and the Smithsonian's National Collection of Fine Arts, commented on Faurer's work: "I am in awe of the high point he can reach in a photograph such as Family, Times Square, at the center of New York in the center of our century. Perhaps no other American image stands comparison with Picasso’s Family of Saltimbanques, on their imagined European plane in 1905… Faurer stands and lives as a master of his medium."Source: Wikipedia
Nat Fein
United States
1914 | † 2000
Nathaniel Fein (August 7, 1914 – September 26, 2000) was a photographer for the New York Herald Tribune for 33 years. Fein is known for photographing Babe Ruth towards the end of his life, winning the 1949 Pulitzer Prize for his photograph The Babe Bows Out. Fein was born and raised on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. He was a press photographer at the New York Herald Tribune from 1933 to 1966. Known for setting a scene correctly, he would climb buildings and bridges to get the shot he was after. Fein's main subject matter was New York following World War II. Albert Einstein, Ty Cobb, Queen Elizabeth and Harry S. Truman were among the many public figures that he photographed. Nat Fein won more press photo awards than any of his contemporaries. Although considered to be one of the greatest human interest photographers in journalism, he carried the distinction of having taken "the most celebrated photograph in sports history." -- The New York Times, 1992. A resident of Tappan, New York, Fein died on September 26, 2000, at the age of 86.Source: Wikipedia Babe Bows Out", photograph of Babe Ruth during a ceremony at Yankee Stadium to retire his number, 13 June 1948 (This photo won the 1949 Pulitzer Prize for photography) © Nat Fein / Public Domain Babe Ruth’s dominating influence changed the game itself. He became the face of the New York Yankees and embodied the ethos of the game of baseball, American sports culture, and New York heritage. In Babe Bows Out photographer Nat Fein captures the beloved athlete and showman in an image that has become synonymous with the immensity of its subject. Nat Fein began to work for the New York Herald Tribune as a copyboy in 1932. After investing in a camera years later, he became a press photographer for the paper, creating a working relationship that lasted 33 years. While working as a staff photographer at the Tribune, Fein had not been assigned to work on the day that the New York Yankee’s would retire Babe Ruth’s number three jersey. On the day when the Yankees would celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Yankee stadium and retire “The Great Bambino’s” number, the mainstay sports photographer for the Tribune called in sick. Thus, on June 13 of 1948, Nat Fein was set out to cover what many suspected could be Babe Ruth’s last public appearance. While other press photographers attempted to capture a portrait of the great American baseball hero wearing his uniform one last time, Nat Fein, tried to capture the iconic number on his jersey, stating: “All the photographers were in the front, and I wanted to see how he looks from the back. So I figured, well, number three is out. The Babe bows out…” – Nat Fein The final image is filled with emotion, a bidding farewell to the greatest player in baseball. Among an interminable crowd of onlookers and accompanied by current Yankees players, Ruth bows out in the stage where his legendary mythology was created. At the time of the photograph in 1948, Babe Ruth had not played for the Yankees for over a decade. Ruth had also been ill for some time, and his appearance had changed; his thin legs and face showed signs of his fragile condition. Fein’s photograph, instead of highlighting the aged features of the passing of time or sickness, captures the silhouette of the baseball giant. The picture presenting Ruth with his classic number three jersey underlines the monumental influence he exuded over the game and New York. The image not only symbolizes a sports hero but a man who was larger than life. His rough childhood with frequent visits to orphanages and hospitals, his kindness to black baseball players in a time of racial inequity, his fondness to volunteer his time for kids sick with Polio, and his larger physique, generate empathy in his farewell photograph. The photograph presents a poetic image that connects us through its resounding human and empathetic quality, connecting the viewer to an unwavering American hero. Babe Bows Out eventually became the first sports photograph to win the Pulitzer Prize. It cemented the importance of the medium of photography. It is considered one of Time Magazine’s 100 most influential images of all time and is featured in the National Baseball Hall of Fame and the Smithsonian Institute. Never surrendering to sickness or ill-health, the photograph commemorates the hometown hero. It immortalizes the strong and imposing Babe Ruth as the towering figure we remember and speak of today. A man whose recognition has reigned supreme over baseball, New York, and the world of sports for over 100 years. Nat Fein’s Babe Bows Out is one of the most excellent images of baseball lore.Source: Holden Luntz Gallery
Andreas Feininger
United States
1906 | † 1999
Andreas Bernhard Lyonel Feininger (December 27, 1906 - February 18, 1999) was an American photographer and a writer on photographic technique. He was noted for his dynamic black-and-white scenes of Manhattan and for studies of the structures of natural objects. Feininger was born in Paris, France, the eldest son of Julia Berg, a German Jew, and the American painter and art educator Lyonel Feininger (1871-1956). His paternal grandparents were the German violinist Karl Feininger (1844-1922) and the American singer Elizabeth Feininger, (née Lutz), who was also of German descent. His younger brother was the painter and photographer T. Lux Feininger (1910-2011). In 1908 the Feininger family moved to Berlin, and in 1919 to Weimar, where Lyonel Feininger took up the post of Master of the Printing Workshop at the newly formed Bauhaus art school. Andreas left school at 16, in 1922, to study at the Bauhaus; he graduated as a cabinetmaker in April 1925. After that he studied architecture, initially at the Staatliche Bauschule Weimar (State Architectural College, Weimar) and later at the Staatliche Bauschule Zerbst. (Zerbst is a city in the German state of Saxony-Anhalt, about 20 km from Dessau, where the Bauhaus moved to in 1926.) The Feininger family moved to Dessau with the Bauhaus. In addition to continuing his architectural studies in Zerbst, Andreas developed an interest in photography and was given guidance by neighbour and Bauhaus teacher László Moholy-Nagy. In 1936, he gave up architecture and moved to Sweden, where he focused on photography. In advance of World War II, in 1939, Feininger immigrated to the U.S. where he established himself as a freelance photographer. In 1943 he joined the staff of Life magazine, an association that lasted until 1962. Feininger became famous for his photographs of New York. Other frequent subjects among his works were science and nature, as seen in bones, shells, plants, and minerals in the images of which he often stressed their structure. Rarely did he photograph people or make portraits. Feininger wrote comprehensive manuals about photography, of which the best known is The Complete Photographer. In the introduction to one of Feininger's books of photographs, Ralph Hattersley, the editor of the photography journal Infinity, described him as "one of the great architects who helped create photography as we know it today." In 1966, the American Society of Media Photographers (ASMP) awarded Feininger its highest distinction, the Robert Leavitt Award. In 1991, the International Center of Photography awarded Feininger the Infinity Lifetime Achievement Award. Today, Feininger's photographs are in the permanent collections of the Center for Creative Photography, the Museum of Modern Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the National Gallery of Art, London's Victoria and Albert Museum, and the George Eastman House in Rochester, New York. Source: Wikipedia
Christopher Felver
United States
1946
Christopher Felver (born October 1946) is a photographer and filmmaker who has published several books of photos of public figures, especially those in the arts, most notably those associated with beat literature. He has made numerous films (as director, cinematographer, or producer), including a documentary on Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Ferlinghetti: A Rebirth of Wonder, released in 2013. Christopher Felver has photographed numerous writers, intellectuals and filmmakers such as Charles Bukowski, William Burroughs, Noam Chomsky, Gregory Corso, Clint Eastwood, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Allen Ginsberg, Dennis Hopper, Oliver Stone, Elizabeth Taylor, Hunter S. Thompson and Kurt Vonnegut. His photography has been exhibited internationally, with solo photographic exhibitions at the Arco d'Alibert, Rome (1987); the Art Institute for the Permian Basin, Odessa, Texas (1987); Torino Fotografia Biennale Internazionale, Turin, Italy (1989); Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris (1994); Roosevelt Study Center, Middelburg, Netherlands (1998); Fahey/Klein Gallery, Los Angeles (2002); the Maine Photographic Workshop (2002); Robert Berman Gallery, Los Angeles (2007); the San Francisco Public Library (2018)[3] and other galleries and museums. His works have also appeared in major group exhibitions, including The Beats: Legacy & Celebration, New York University (1994) and Beatific Soul: Jack Kerouac On The Road, New York Public Library (2007). A collection of his photographs is held by the University of Delaware. Source: Wikipedia Christopher Felver is a cultural documentarian. His distinctive visual signature is a lasting contribution to the legacy of our national cultural community. Felver’s films & photographs reads like a roster of American mid-century avant-garde. Aside from portraits, Christopher Felver has also produced another body of work entitled: Ordered World. About this body of work, curator, James Crump writes, “Mr. Felver celebrates the elemental essences manmade and natural objects that tend to elude observation. Working in a manner not unlike Karl Blossfeldt, Albert Renger-Patzsch and the New Objectivity artists of 1920s and ’30s Germany, Felver asserts his own contemporary vision here. His pictures are informed by Minimalism and the keen, refined observation of a poet unwilling to discard the mundane or topical content that surrounds us but, nevertheless, is overlooked in the quickened pace of our technologically frenzied age. The series, while concerned with monumentalizing and focusing our attention on the ordered and structured surfaces of objects, resists any historical referencing to the hardened gaze of the twentieth century. It asks the viewer to ruminate on the overlooked beauty which surrounds us, the wonderment that unfolds, with careful and refined examination.” In 1994 Felver attended a Connecticut gathering of Native American dancers in ceremonial dress. These 20 photographs capture a traditional gathering of Northeastern tribes in Felver’s direct portrait style. As visiting artist in 1988 & 1989 at the American Academy in Rome, Christopher Felver made over 250 portraits of European artists across the continent. Felver’s 1350 portraits represent American and European cultural icons. In 1984 Christopher Felver traveled as a journalist to Japan, Hong Kong and Beijing documenting the customs and social conditions. Writers Lawrence Ferlingetti, Robert Creeley, David Amram, Amiri Baraka, George Plimpton, David Shapiro, Luc Sante, Lee Ranaldo, William Parker, Douglas Brinkley, Gary Snyder, Lance Henson, Linda Hogan and Simon Ortiz have written introductions for Christopher Felver’s books. Source: chrisfelver.com "With his gravelly voice, Felver would have made a great gumshoe in a mystery serial during the Golden Age of American radio, which ended around 75 years ago. Luckily for us, he did not miss his calling, which is to take portraits of the people who make up the cultural backbone of America — its artists, writers, composers, and musicians — people in the public eye, even if that audience is tiny." "Felver didn’t just take a photograph, as each portrait is accompanied by a short poem or line of poetry written by the subject in his or her own hand. He finds another way to be a witness." "I cannot think of another person who has given us such intimate portraits of Sherman Alexie, Amiri Baraka, Louise Erdrich, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Allen Ginsberg, Joy Harjo, Eartha Kitt, Jasper Johns, Toni Morrison, Patti Smith, and Anne Waldman. He has made photographic portraits of Native American writers, and of composers and musicians from John Cage and Doc Watson to Mavis Staples and Ozzy Osbourne. He spent a week in Nicaragua in early part of 1984 with Lawrence Ferlinghetti, five years after the 1979 July revolution there. The photographs in Felver’s book, The Late Great Allen Ginsberg (2002), were taken between 1980 and 1997, in which various other people make appearances: Philip Glass, Ray Manzarek, Ed Sanders, Norman Mailer, Robert Frank, and Gary Snyder." "Each of these projects reveals another side of Felver’s capacity to engage with others and the world, as well as to stand aside and let his subjects speak. I cannot think of anyone who has been as devoted as Felver has been to his subjects. Perhaps it is time we find a way to return that devotion." -- John Yau Source: Hyperallergic
Roger Fenton
United Kingdom
1819 | † 1869
Roger Fenton was a British photographer, noted as one of the first war photographers. He was born into a Lancashire merchant family. After graduating from London with an Arts degree, Fenton became interested in painting and later developed a keen interest in the new technology of photography after seeing early examples at The Great Exhibition in 1851. Within a year, he began exhibiting his own photographs. He became a leading British photographer and instrumental in founding the Photographic Society (later the Royal Photographic Society). It is likely that in autumn 1854, as the Crimean War grabbed the attention of the British public, that some powerful friends and patrons – among them Prince Albert and Duke of Newcastle, Secretary of State for War – urged Roger Fenton to go to the Crimea to record the happenings. The London print publisher Thomas Agnew & Sons became his commercial sponsor. The resulting photographs may have been intended to offset the general unpopularity of the war among the British people, and to counteract the occasionally critical reporting of correspondent William Howard Russell of The Times; the photographs were to be converted into woodblocks and published in the less critical Illustrated London News. He set off aboard HMS Hecla in February, landed at Balaklava on 8 March and remained there until 22 June. Fenton took Marcus Sparling as his photographic assistant, a servant known as William and a large horse-drawn van of equipment. Due to the size and cumbersome nature of his photographic equipment, Fenton was limited in his choice of motifs. Because the photographic material of his time needed long exposures, he was only able to produce pictures of stationary objects, mostly posed pictures; he avoided making pictures of dead, injured or mutilated soldiers. But he also photographed the landscape, including an area near to where the Charge of the Light Brigade – made famous in Tennyson's poem – took place. In letters home soldiers had called the original valley "The Valley of Death", and Tennyson's poem used the same phrase, so when in September 1855 Thomas Agnew put the picture on show, as one of a series of eleven collectively titled Panorama of the Plateau of Sebastopol in Eleven Parts in a London exhibition, he took the troops'—and Tennyson's—epithet, expanded it as The Valley of the Shadow of Death with its deliberate evocation of Psalm 23, and assigned it to the piece; it is not the location of the famous charge, which took place in a long, broad valley several miles to the south-east. Despite summer high temperatures, breaking several ribs in a fall, suffering from cholera and also becoming depressed at the carnage he witnessed at Sevastopol, in all Fenton managed to make over 350 usable large format negatives. An exhibition of 312 prints was soon on show in London and at various places across the nation in the months that followed. Fenton also showed them to Queen Victoria and Prince Albert and also to Emperor Napoleon III in Paris. Nevertheless, sales were not as good as expected. Despite the lack of commercial success for his Crimean photographs, Fenton later travelled widely over Britain to record landscapes and still life images. However, as time moved on, photography became more accessible to the general public. Many people sought to profit from selling quick portraits to common people. It is likely that Fenton, from a wealthy background, disdained 'trade' photographers, but nevertheless still wanted to profit from the art by taking exclusive images and selling them at good prices. He thus fell into conflict with many of his peers who genuinely needed to make money from photography and were willing to 'cheapen their art' (as Fenton saw it), and also with the Photographic Society, who believed that no photographer should soil himself with the 'sin' of exploiting his talent commercially in any manner. Amongst Fenton's photographs from this period are the City of Westminster, including The Palace of Westminster nearing completion in 1857 – almost certainly the earliest images of the building, and the only photographs showing the incomplete Clock Tower. In 1858 Fenton made studio genre studies based on romantically imaginative ideas of Muslim life, such as Seated Odalisque, using friends and models who were not always convincing in their roles. Although well known for his Crimean War photography, his photographic career lasted little more than a decade, and in 1862 he abandoned the profession entirely, selling his equipment and returned to the law as a barrister. Although becoming almost forgotten by the time of his death seven years later he was later formally recognized by art historians for his pioneering work and artistic endeavour. In 1862 the organizing committee for the International Exhibition in London announced its plans to place photography, not with the other fine arts as had been done in the Manchester Art Treasures Exhibition only five years earlier, but in the section reserved for machinery, tools and instruments – photography was considered a craft, for tradesmen. For Fenton and many of his colleagues, this was conclusive proof of photography's diminished status, and the pioneers drifted away. He died 8 August 1869 at his home in Potters Bar, Middlesex after a week-long illness – he was 50 years old. His wife died in 1886. Their graves were destroyed in 1969 when the Potters Bar church where they were buried was deconsecrated and demolished.Source: Wikipedia Roger Fenton is a towering figure in the history of photography, the most celebrated and influential photographer in England during the medium’s “golden age” of the 1850s. Before taking up the camera, he studied law in London and painting in Paris. He traveled to Russia in 1852 and photographed the landmarks of Kiev and Moscow; founded the Photographic Society (later designated the Royal Photographic Society) in 1853; was appointed the first official photographer of the British Museum in 1854; achieved widespread recognition for his photographs of the Crimean War in 1855; and excelled throughout the decade as a photographer in all the medium’s genres—architecture, landscape, portraiture, still life, reportage, and tableau vivant. Fenton’s most widespread acclaim came in 1855, with photographs of the Crimean War, a conflict in which British, French, Sardinian, and Turkish troops battled Russia’s attempt to expand its influence into European territory of the Ottoman empire. Fenton was commissioned by the Manchester publisher Thomas Agnew & Sons to travel to the Crimea and document the war, and his mission was encouraged by the government, which hoped that his photographs would reassure a worried public. Fenton’s extensive documentation of the war—the first such use of photography—included pictures of the port of Balaklava, the camps, the terrain of battle, and portraits of officers, soldiers, and support staff of the various allied armies. Perhaps inspired by the experience of traveling through Constantinople en route to Balaklava, or perhaps simply sharing the mid-nineteenth-century vogue for all things exotic, Fenton produced a theatrical suite of Orientalist compositions during the summer of 1858—costume pieces that strove for high art rather than documentation and that were, in a sense, an antidote to the harsh realities he had recorded in the Crimea. They owed as much to the paintings of Delacroix and Ingres as to Fenton’s own experience in the East. In 1862, after a final series of photographs—a remarkable group of lush still lifes—Fenton sold his equipment and negatives, resigned from the Royal Photographic Society, and returned to the bar. In the course of a single decade, Fenton had played a pivotal role—by advocacy and example—in demonstrating that photography could rival drawing and painting not only as a means of conveying information, but also as a medium of visual delight and powerful expression.Source: Metropolitan Museum of Art
Arthur Fields
Ireland
1901 | † 1994
Arthur Fields was an Irish street photographer of Ukrainian descent. He took more than 180,000 photographs of pedestrians on the south end of Dublin's O'Connell Bridge, over more than 50 years. Fields was born into a Ukrainian Jewish family. His family fled antisemitism in Kiev in 1885, and later settled in Dublin. Fields originally ran a sound studio where people could make a recording of their own voice, but later began his photography when he bought a box camera. Fields switched to a Polaroid instant camera later in his career. Field's brother was also a photographer on the bridge. Fields' extensive photographs are recognised as a social record of Dublin from the 1930s to the 1980s, depicting the changing fashions and shopfronts of the city. Nelson's Pillar often featured in Field's photograph until its destruction by Irish republicans in 1966. Fields took an estimated 182,500 photographs of pedestrians on the bridge from the early 1930s until 1985. Notable people photographed by Fields on the bridge included the playwright Brendan Behan, the actors Margaret Rutherford and Gene Tierney, and Prince Monolulu, who claimed to be a chief of the Falasha tribe of Abyssinia, and who wore a headdress and a fur coat. Fields lived in the Dublin suburb of Raheny, and would walk seven miles to and from the bridge each day to work. Field's modus operandi would be to "pretend to take a picture of a passer-by and, when they stopped, he'd take the real one. Then he'd give them a ticket and they could collect the photograph from a nearby studio run by his wife; she developed all the photos." Arthur Fields' work has been documented on the interactive documentary website, Man On Bridge: 50 Years as a Photographer on O’Connell Bridge produced by El Zorrero Films. The website encourages the public to submit their photographs to an online archive. The web project which features an image archive and documentary videos won best website at the Digital Media Awards in 2015. The Man on Bridge project was also a winner of the Arthur Guinness Projects. In December 2014 an exhibition of 3,400 photographs collected for the project was held at the Gallery of Photography in DublinSource: Wikipedia
Larry Fink
United States
1941
Larry Fink is an American photographer best known for his black-and-white images of people at parties and in other social situations. Fink was born in 1941 in Brooklyn, New York. His father, Bernard Fink, was a lawyer, and his mother, Sylvia Caplan Fink, was an anti-nuclear weapon activist and an elder rights activist for the Gray Panthers. His younger sister was noted lawyer Elizabeth Fink (1945–2015). He grew up in a politically conscious household and has described himself as "a Marxist from Long Island." He studied at the New School for Social Research in New York City, where photographer Lisette Model was one of his teachers and encouraged his work. He has been on the faculty of Bard College since 1986. Earlier he taught at other institutions including the Yale University School of Art (1977–1978), Cooper Union School of Art and Architecture (1978–1983), Parsons School of Design, and New York University. Fink's best-known work is Social Graces, a series of photographs he produced in the 1970s that depicted and contrasted wealthy Manhattanites at fashionable clubs and social events alongside working-class people from rural Pennsylvania participating in events such as high school graduations. Social Graces was the subject of a solo exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in 1979 and was published in book form in 1984. A New York Times reviewer described the series as exploring social class by comparing "two radically divergent worlds", while accomplishing "one of the things that straight photography does best: provid[ing] excruciatingly intimate glimpses of real people and their all-too-fallibly-human lives." In 2001, for an assignment from The New York Times Magazine, Larry Fink created a series of satirical color images of President George W. Bush and his cabinet (portrayed by stand-ins) in scenes of decadent revelry modeled on paintings by Weimar-era painters Max Beckmann, Otto Dix and George Grosz. The planned publication of the series was canceled after the September 11 attacks, but was displayed in the summer of 2004 at the PowerHouse Gallery in New York, in a show titled The Forbidden Pictures: A Political Tableau. Larry Fink was the recipient of Guggenheim Fellowships in 1976 and 1979 and National Endowment for the Arts Individual Photography Fellowships in 1978 and 1986. In 2002 he received an honorary doctorate from the College for Creative Studies in Detroit.Source: Wikipedia Working as a professional photographer for over fifty-five years, Larry Fink has had one-man shows at New York’s Museum of Modern Art, and the Whitney Museum of American Art amongst others. On the European continent, he has had one-man shows at the Musee de l’Elysee in Lausanne, Switzerland, the Musee de la Photographie in Charleroi, Belgium, and in 2019 a retrospective at Fotografia Europea in Italy. He was awarded the “Best of Show” for an exhibition curated by Christian Caujolle at the Arles Festival of Photography in France. In recent years retrospective shows have been shown at the Museo de Arte Contemporaneo in Panama City as well as six different museums in Spain. This past year in 2018, Larry had a solo show featuring The Boxing Photographs at The Philadelphia Museum of Art, and at the deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum with the show Primal Empathy. Larry was the recipient of the Lucie Award for Documentary Photography in 2017, and in 2015, he received the International Center of Photography (ICP) Infinity Award for Lifetime Fine Art Photography. He has also been awarded two John Simon Guggenheim Fellowships and two National Endowment for the Arts, Individual Photography Fellowships. He has been teaching for over fifty-two years, with professorial positions held at Yale University, Cooper Union, and lastly at Bard College, where he is an honored professor emeritus. Larry’s first monograph, the seminal Social Graces (Aperture, 1984) left a lasting impression in the photographic community. There have been twelve other monographs with the subject matter crossing the class barrier in unexpected ways. Two of his most recently published books were on several “Best Of” lists of the year: The Beats published by Artiere /powerhouse and Larry Fink on Composition and Improvisation published by Aperture. As an editorial photographer, The New Yorker and Vanity Fair have been amongst a long list of accounts. He is currently collaborating with fashion house Jil Sander based in Milan, Italy. In the summer of 2017, Larry’s work from The Beats and The Vanities was on display at Giorgio Armani’s beautiful Armani/Silos exhibition space in Milan, Italy. This exhibition was the first of its kind for the space. Additionally, the Newport Museum of Art in Rhode Island exhibited pictures from his monograph Somewhere There’s Music. Fink On Warhol: New York Photographs of the 1960s, Larry’s latest monograph was released Spring 2017 featuring rare photographs of Andy Warhol and his friends at the Factory interspersed with street scenes and the political atmosphere of 1960s New York. Also released in 2017 was The Polarities chronicling five years of recent work, and The Outpour containing images taken at and around the Women’s March on Washington, D.C. Source: www.larryfinkphotography.com
Franco Fontana
Franco Fontana is an Italian photographer, born in Modena, Italy. He is best known for his abstract colour landscapes. He started taking photographs in the 1950s when he was working as a decorator in a furniture showroom. In 1961 he joined a local amateur club in Modena. The experience would be a turning point in his career, and Fontana went on to have his first solo exhibition in 1965 at the Società Fotografica Subalpina, Turin and at the Galleria della Sala di Cultura in Modena in 1968. Since then he has participated in more than 400 group and solo exhibitions. Fontana has photographed for advertising campaigns for brands such as Fiat, Volkswagen, Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane, Snam, Sony, Volvo, Versace, Canon, Kodak, Robe di Kappa, Swissair, and has been a magazine photographer for publications including Time Magazine, Life, Vogue (USA and France), Venerdì di Repubblica, Panorama, and with the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung and the New York Times. Fontana's first book, Skyline, was published in 1978 in France by Contrejour and in Italy by Punto e Virgola with a text by Helmut Gernsheim. Fontana is the art director of the Toscana Fotofestival. He has received numerous awards, such as the 1989 Tokyo Photographer Society of Japan - The 150 Years of Photography - Photographer Award. Fontana is especially interested in the interplay of colours. His early innovations in colour photography in the 1960s were stylistically disruptive. According to art critic Giuliana Scimé, Fontana "destroyed all the structures, practices, and technical choices within the Italian tradition." Fontana uses 35mm cameras, and as noted by Iwan Zahar, deploys distant viewpoints with telephoto lenses to flatten contours in a landscape of crops and fields into bands of intense, saturated colour. This is an effect that Franco Lefèvre has described as dialectical landscapism. Of his use of colour in his 2019 retrospective exhibition Sintesi ('Synthesis') at Fondazione Modena Arti Visive, curator Diana Baldon has observed “His bold geometric compositions are characterised by shimmering colours, level perspectives and a geometric-formalist and minimal language...By adopting this approach during the 1960s, Fontana injected a new vitality into the field of creative colour photography for then multicolour was not in fashion in art photography...The way Fontana shoots, dematerialises the objects photographed, which loose three-dimensionality and realism to become part of an abstract drawing”. Aside from the rural landscape Fontana has applied his graphic sensibility to other subjects: city architecture, portraiture, fashion, still-life and the nude. Fontana's photographs have also been used as album cover art for records produced by the ECM Records jazz label.Source: Wikipedia Fontana's style was shaped in the late 1960s under the influence of Abstract Expressionism and Minimalism. In that his teachers were his older contemporaries, Mark Rothko, Barnett Newman and Ed Reinhardt. Fontana's work with its focus on form and color was quite different from the classical black-and-white art photography that was predominant at that time. His work is in more than 50 museums in the world, including Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography, George Eastman House International Museum of Photography and Film (Rochester), Ludwig Museum (Cologne), San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Museum of Fine Arts (Boston), Museum of Modern Art (Paris), The Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts (Moscow), National Gallery of Victoria (Melbourne), Victoria and Albert Museum (London), Galleria d’Arte Moderna - Torino, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston-Texas - USA, Deutch Bank, Banca Unicredit, Italia, UBS Unione Banche Svizzere, Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes- Buenos Aires, Muscadelle Museum of Art - Williamsburg, USA, Mus e WWestlicht, Vienna, IVAM, Museo Internazionale d’Arte Moderna, Valencia, Mus e de l’Elys e, Losanna, Maxxi, Roma, Macro, Roma.Source: francofontanaphotographer.com
Martine Franck
Belgium
1938 | † 2012
Franck was born in Antwerp to the Belgian banker Louis Franck and his British wife, Evelyn. After her birth the family moved almost immediately to London. A year later, her father joined the British army, and the rest of the family were evacuated to the United States, spending the remainder of the Second World War on Long Island and in Arizona. Franck's father was an amateur art collector who often took his daughter to galleries and museums. Franck was in boarding school from the age of six onwards, and her mother sent her a postcard every day, frequently of paintings. Ms. Franck, attended Heathfield School, an all-girls boarding school close to Ascot in England, and studied the history of art from the age of 14. "I had a wonderful teacher who really galvanized me," she says. "In those days she took us on outings to London, which was the big excitement of the year for me." Franck studied art history at the University of Madrid and at the Ecole du Louvre in Paris. After struggling through her thesis (on French sculptor Henri Gaudier-Brzeska and the influence of cubism on sculpture), she said she realized she had no particular talent for writing, and turned to photography instead. In 1963, Franck's photography career started following trips to the Far East, having taken pictures with her cousin’s Leica camera. Returning to France in 1964, now possessing a camera of her own, Franck became an assistant to photographers Eliot Elisofon and Gjon Mili at Time-Life. By 1969 she was a busy freelance photographer for magazines such as Vogue, Life and Sports Illustrated, and the official photographer of the Théâtre du Soleil (a position she held for 48 years). From 1970 to 1971 she worked in Paris at the Agence Vu photo agency, and in 1972 she co-founded the Viva agency. In 1980, Franck joined the Magnum Photos cooperative agency as a "nominee", and in 1983 she became a full member. She was one of a very small number of women to be accepted into the agency. In 1983, she completed a project for the now-defunct French Ministry of Women's Rights and in 1985 she began collaborating with the non-profit International Federation of Little Brothers of the Poor. In 1993, she first traveled to the Irish island of Tory where she documented the tiny Gaelic community living there. She also traveled to Tibet and Nepal, and with the help of Marilyn Silverstone photographed the education system of the Tibetan Tulkus monks. In 2003 and 2004 she returned to Paris to document the work of theater director Robert Wilson who was staging La Fontaine's fables at the Comédie Française. Nine books of Franck's photographs have been published, and in 2005 Franck was made a chevalier of the French Légion d'Honneur. Franck continued working even after she was diagnosed with bone cancer in 2010. Her last exhibition was in October 2011 at the Maison Européenne de la Photographie. The exhibit consisted of 62 portraits of artists "coming from somewhere else" collected from 1965 through 2010. This same year, there were collections of portraits shown at New York's Howard Greenberg Gallery and at the Claude Bernard Gallery, Paris. Franck was well known for her documentary-style photographs of important cultural figures such as the painter Marc Chagall, philosopher Michel Foucault and poet Seamus Heaney, and of remote or marginalized communities such as Tibetan Buddhist monks, elderly French people, and isolated Gaelic speakers. Michael Pritchard, the Director-General of the Royal Photographic Society, observed: "Martine was able to work with her subjects and bring out their emotions and record their expressions on film, helping the viewer understand what she had seen in person. Her images were always empathetic with her subject." In 1976, Frank took one of her most iconic photos of bathers beside a pool in Le Brusc, Provence. By her account, she saw them from a distance and rushed to photograph the moment, all the while changing the roll of film in her camera. She quickly closed the lens just at the right moment, when happened to be most intense. She cited as influences the portraits of British photographer Julia Margaret Cameron, the work of American photojournalist Dorothea Lange and American documentary photographer Margaret Bourke-White. In 2010, she told The New York Times that photography "suits my curiosity about people and human situations." She worked outside the studio, using a 35 mm Leica camera, and preferring black and white film. The British Royal Photographic Society has described her work as "firmly rooted in the tradition of French humanist documentary photography." Source: Wikipedia Born in Belgium, Martine Franck (1938-2012) grew up in the United States and in England. She studied art history at the University of Madrid and at the École du Louvre in Paris. In 1963, she went to China, taking her cousin's Leica camera with her, and discovered the joys of documenting other cultures. Returning home via Hong Kong, Cambodia, India, Afghanistan and Turkey, and bought her first camera while on the trip. Returning to France, she worked as a photographic assistant at Time-Life where she developed her own technique. In 1966, Franck met Henri Cartier-Bresson, whose photographs epitomized Magnum's tradition of humanitarian photography. Franck was adamant that she would neither bask in his reflection nor disappear in his shadow and she joined the Vu agency in 1970. Her first solo exhibition was planned for the ICA in London that year; when she saw that the invitations were embossed with the information that her husband would be present at the launch, she cancelled the show. With Vu's demise, Franck co-founded the Viva agency in 1972. It also collapsed and it was not until 1980 that Franck joined Magnum, becoming a full member in 1983. She was one of the few women to be accepted into the agency and served as vice-president from 1998 to 2000. Eschewing the war/human tragedy reportage that characterized Magnum's reputation, Franck continued her projects on marginal or isolated lives throughout the rest of her life. Source: Howard Greenberg Gallery
Robert Frank
Switzerland/United States
1924 | † 2019
Robert Frank was a Swiss photographer and documentary filmmaker, who became an American binational. His most notable work, the 1958 book titled The Americans, earned Frank comparisons to a modern-day de Tocqueville for his fresh and nuanced outsider's view of American society. Critic Sean O'Hagan, writing in The Guardian in 2014, said The Americans "changed the nature of photography, what it could say and how it could say it. it remains perhaps the most influential photography book of the 20th century." Frank later expanded into film and video and experimented with manipulating photographs and photomontage. I’m always looking outside, trying to look inside. Trying to say something that is true. But maybe nothing is really true. Except what’s out there. And what’s out there is always changing. -- Robert Frank Frank was born in Zürich, Switzerland, the son of Rosa (Zucker) and Hermann Frank. His family was Jewish. Robert states in Gerald Fox's 2004 documentary Leaving Home, Coming Home that his mother, Rosa (other sources state her name as Regina), had a Swiss passport, while his father, Hermann originating from Frankfurt, Germany had become stateless after losing his German citizenship as a Jew. They had to apply for Swiss citizenship for Robert and his older brother, Manfred. Though Frank and his family remained safe in Switzerland during World War II, the threat of Nazism nonetheless affected his understanding of oppression. He turned to photography, in part as a means to escape the confines of his business-oriented family and home, and trained under a few photographers and graphic designers before he created his first hand-made book of photographs, 40 Fotos, in 1946. Frank emigrated to the United States in 1947 and secured a job in New York City as a fashion photographer for Harper's Bazaar. In 1949, the new editor of Camera magazine, Walter Laubli (1902-1991), published a substantial portfolio of Jakob Tuggener pictures made at upper-class entertainments and in factories, alongside the work of the 25-year-old Frank who had just returned to his native Switzerland after two years abroad, with pages including some of his first pictures from New York. The magazine promoted the two as representatives of the 'new photography' of Switzerland. Tuggener was a role model for the younger artist, first mentioned to him by Frank's boss and mentor, Zurich commercial photographer Michael Wolgensinger (1913-1990) who understood that Frank was unsuited to the more mercenary application of the medium. Tuggener, as a serious artist who had left the commercial world behind, was the "one Frank really did love, from among all Swiss photographers," according to Guido Magnaguagno and Fabrik, as a photo book, was a model for Frank's Les Américains ('The Americans') published ten years later in Paris by Delpire, in 1958. He soon left to travel in South America and Europe. He created another hand-made book of photographs that he shot in Peru, and returned to the U.S. in 1950. That year was momentous for Frank, who, after meeting Edward Steichen, participated in the group show 51 American Photographers at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA); he also married fellow artist Mary Frank née Mary Lockspeiser, with whom he had two children, Andrea and Pablo. Though he was initially optimistic about the United States' society and culture, Frank's perspective quickly changed as he confronted the fast pace of American life and what he saw as an overemphasis on money. He now saw America as an often bleak and lonely place, a perspective that became evident in his later photography. Frank's own dissatisfaction with the control that editors exercised over his work also undoubtedly colored his experience. He continued to travel, moving his family briefly to Paris. In 1953, he returned to New York and continued to work as a freelance photojournalist for magazines including McCall's, Vogue, and Fortune. Associating with other contemporary photographers such as Saul Leiter and Diane Arbus, he helped form what Jane Livingston has termed The New York School of photographers (not to be confused with the New York School of art) during the 1940s and 1950s. In 1955, Frank achieved further recognition with the inclusion by Edward Steichen of seven of his photographs (many more than most other contributors) in the world-touring Museum of Modern Art exhibition The Family of Man that was to be seen by 9 million visitors and with a popular catalog that is still in print. Frank's contributions had been taken in Spain (of a woman kissing her swaddled babe-in-arms); of a bowed old woman in Peru; a rheumy-eyed miner in Wales; and the others in England and the US, including two (one atypically soft-focus) of his wife in pregnancy; and one (later to be included in The Americans) of six laughing women in the window of the White Tower Hamburger Stand on Fourteenth Street, New York City. The truth is somewhere between the documentary and the fictional, and that is what I try to show. What is real one moment has become imaginary the next. You believe what you see now, and the next second you don’t anymore. -- Robert Frank Inspired by fellow Swiss Jakob Tuggener's 1943 book Fabrik, Bill Brandt's The English at Home (1936), and Walker Evans's American Photographs (1938), and on the recommendation of Evans (a previous recipient), Alexey Brodovitch, Alexander Leiberman, Edward Steichen, and Meyer Schapiro, Frank secured a Guggenheim Fellowship from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation in 1955 to travel across the United States and photograph all strata of its society. Cities he visited included Detroit and Dearborn, Michigan; Savannah, Georgia; Miami Beach and St. Petersburg, Florida; New Orleans, Louisiana; Houston, Texas; Los Angeles, California; Reno, Nevada; Salt Lake City, Utah; Butte, Montana; and Chicago, Illinois. He took his family along with him for part of his series of road trips over the next two years, during which time he took 28,000 shots. 83 of these were selected by him for publication in The Americans. Frank's journey was not without incident. He later recalled the anti-Semitism to which he was subject in a small Arkansas town. "I remember the guy [policeman] took me into the police station, and he sat there and put his feet on the table. It came out that I was Jewish because I had a letter from the Guggenheim Foundation. They really were primitive." He was told by the sheriff, "Well, we have to get somebody who speaks Yiddish." ... "They wanted to make a thing out of it. It was the only time it happened on the trip. They put me in jail. It was scary. Nobody knew where I was." Elsewhere in the South, he was told by a sheriff that he had "an hour to leave town." Those incidents may have contributed to the dark view of America found in the work. Shortly after returning to New York in 1957, Frank met Beat writer Jack Kerouac "at a New York party where poets and Beatniks were," and showed him the photographs from his travels. However, according to Joyce Johnson, Kerouac's lover at the time, she met Frank while waiting for Kerouac to emerge from a conference with his editors, at Viking Press, looked at Frank's portfolio, and introduced them to each other. Kerouac immediately told Frank, "Sure I can write something about these pictures." He eventually contributed the introduction to the U.S. edition of The Americans. Frank also became lifelong friends with Allen Ginsberg, and was one of the main visual artists to document the Beat subculture, which felt an affinity with Frank's interest in documenting the tensions between the optimism of the 1950s and the realities of class and racial differences. The irony that Frank found in the gloss of American culture and wealth over this tension gave his photographs a clear contrast to those of most contemporary American photojournalists, as did his use of unusual focus, low lighting, and cropping that deviated from accepted photographic techniques. This divergence from contemporary photographic standards gave Frank difficulty at first in securing an American publisher. Les Américains was first published in 1958 by Robert Delpire in Paris, as part of its Encyclopédie Essentielle series, with texts by Simone de Beauvoir, Erskine Caldwell, William Faulkner, Henry Miller and John Steinbeck that Delpire positioned opposite Frank's photographs. It was finally published in 1959 in the United States, without the texts, by Grove Press, where it initially received substantial criticism. Popular Photography, for one, derided his images as "meaningless blur, grain, muddy exposures, drunken horizons and general sloppiness." Though sales were also poor at first, the fact that the introduction was by the popular Kerouac helped it reach a larger audience. Over time and through the inspiration of later artists, The Americans became a seminal work in American photography and art history, and is the work with which Frank is most clearly identified. In 1961, Frank received his first individual show, entitled Robert Frank: Photographer, at the Art Institute of Chicago. He also showed at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 1962. By the time The Americans was published in the United States in 1959, Frank had moved away from photography to concentrate on filmmaking. Among his films was the 1959 Pull My Daisy, which was written and narrated by Kerouac and starred Ginsberg, Gregory Corso and others from the Beat circle. The Beats emphasized spontaneity, and the film conveyed the quality of having been thrown together or even improvised. Pull My Daisy was accordingly praised for years as an improvisational masterpiece, until Frank's co-director, Alfred Leslie, revealed in a November 28, 1968 article in the Village Voice that the film was actually carefully planned, rehearsed, and directed by him and Frank, who shot the film with professional lighting. Though Frank continued to be interested in film and video, he returned to still images in the 1970s, publishing his second photographic book, The Lines of My Hand, in 1972. This work has been described as a "visual autobiography", and consists largely of personal photographs. However, he largely gave up "straight" photography to instead create narratives out of constructed images and collages, incorporating words and multiple frames of images that were directly scratched and distorted on the negatives. None of this later work has achieved an impact comparable to that of The Americans. As some critics have pointed out, this is perhaps because Frank began playing with constructed images more than a decade after Robert Rauschenberg introduced his silkscreen composites—in contrast to The Americans, Frank's later images simply were not beyond the pale of accepted technique and practice by that time. Frank and Mary separated in 1969. He remarried, to sculptor June Leaf, and in 1971, moved to the community of Mabou, Nova Scotia in Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia in Canada. In 1974, his daughter, Andrea, was killed in a plane crash in Tikal, Guatemala. Also around this time, his son, Pablo, was first hospitalized and diagnosed with schizophrenia. Much of Frank's subsequent work dealt with the impact of the loss of both his daughter and subsequently his son, who died in an Allentown, Pennsylvania hospital in 1994. In 1995, in memory of his daughter, he founded the Andrea Frank Foundation, which provides grants to artists. After his move to Nova Scotia, Canada, Frank divided his time between his home there, in a former fisherman's shack on the coast, and his Bleecker Street loft in New York. He acquired a reputation for being a recluse (particularly since the death of Andrea), declining most interviews and public appearances. He continued to accept eclectic assignments, however, such as photographing the 1984 Democratic National Convention and directing music videos for artists such as New Order ("Run"), and Patti Smith ("Summer Cannibals"). Frank produced both films and still images, and helped organize several retrospectives of his art. His work has been represented by Pace/MacGill Gallery in New York since 1984. In 1994, the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. presented the most comprehensive retrospective of Frank's work to date, entitled Moving Out. Frank died on September 9, 2019, at his home in Nova Scotia.Source: Wikipedia I have been frequently accused of deliberately twisting subject matter to my point of view. Above all, I know that life for a photographer cannot be a matter of indifference. Opinion often consists of a kind of criticism. But criticism can come out of love. It is important to see what is invisible to others—perhaps the look of hope or the look of sadness. Also it is always the instantaneous reaction to oneself that produces a photograph. -- Robert Frank
Stuart Franklin
United Kingdom
1956
Stuart Franklin is a British photographer. He is a member of Magnum Photos and was its President from 2006 to 2009. Franklin was born on June 16 1956 at Guys Hospital in London. He studied drawing under Leonard McComb in Oxford and Whitechapel, London, and from 1976 to 1979 photography at West Surrey College of Art and Design, where he graduated with a BA. Moreover, between 1995 and 1997, he studied geography at the University of Oxford, first receiving a BA and the Gibbs Prize for geography. He received a doctorate in Geography from the University of Oxford in 2000. Stuart Franklin was awarded a professorship in documentary photography in 2016. He teaches photography and visual storytelling at Volda University College, Norway. From 1980 until 1985, Franklin worked with Sygma in Paris. During that time he photographed the civil war in Lebanon, unemployment in Britain, famine in Sudan and the Heysel Stadium disaster. Joining Magnum Photos in 1985, he became a full member in 1989. In the same year, Franklin photographed the uprising in Tiananmen Square and shot one of the Tank Man photographs, first published in TIME Magazine, as well as widely documenting the uprising in Beijing earning him a World Press Photo Award. In 1989 Franklin traveled with Greenpeace to Antarctica. He worked on about twenty stories for National Geographic between 1991 and 2009, subjects including Inca conqueror Francisco Pizarro and the hydro-struggle in Quebec and places such as Buenos Aires and Malaysia. In addition, he worked on book and cultural projects. In October 2008, his book Footprint: Our Landscape in Flux was published by Thames & Hudson. An ominous photographic document of Europe’s changing landscape, it highlights Franklin's ecological concern. During 2009 Franklin curated an exhibition on Gaza - Point of No Return for the Noorderlicht Photo Festival. Since 2009 he has focused on a long-term landscape project in Norway published as Narcissus in 2013. More recently he has worked on documentary projects on doctors working in Syria, and immigration in Calais. Franklin's most recent book, The Documentary Impulse was published by Phaidon in April 2016. It investigates the nature of truth in reporting and the drive towards self-representation beginning 50,000 years ago with cave art through to the various iterations and impulses that have guided documentary photography along its differing tracks for nearly 200 years. Franklin was the general chair of the World Press Photo jury 2017.Source: Wikipedia How Stuart Franklin took his Tank Man photograph In our book, The Documentary Impulse, the acclaimed photographer Stuart Franklin explores the human drive behind documentary photography, whether it's the passion to record the moments we experience, or the need to bear witness to forces that we want to change. The second of those two drives spurred Franklin in the summer of 1989, when he shot Tank Man, the unnamed, and to-this-day still unknown pro-democracy protestor who stood in the way of the Chinese army’s tanks, as they tried to clear Tiananmen Square. Franklin's film was smuggled out of Beijing to Magnum's Paris office by a French student in a box of tea, and, following its development and distribution, his picture moved world leaders across the globe, including the then US president George H W Bush. Here’s how he got that photograph. “I remember lying prone on a balcony on the sixth floor of the Beijing Hotel with the Newsweek photographer Charlie Cole, photographing the event around noon on 4 June,” Franklin recalls. “Earlier that day Tiananmen Square had been cleared by the Chinese Army. However, a group of civilians lined up to face a double row of soldiers who themselves stood in firing positions in front of a column of tanks. These civilians were shot at repeatedly, leaving at least twenty casualties. As the bodies were carried away the standoff died down and a column of tanks broke through, moving slowly eastwards. Waiting for them a few hundred metres down the road was a man in a white shirt and dark trousers, carrying two shopping bags. Alone he blocked the path of the tanks, watched by groups of nervous bystanders and perhaps fifty journalists, camera crews and photographers on balconies on almost every floor of the hotel." Franklin captured the most widely distributed image of the event. Yet, after the taking the shot, he wasn’t convinced of the image’s power. “On the balcony after the event, which lasted less than three minutes, a conversation ensued with a writer for Vanity Fair, T.D. Allman. Allman insisted on the significance of the spectacle,” Franklin writes. “I recalled images from 1968 in Prague and Bratislava where protesters stood up bare-chested against Russian tanks, and similar accounts from China during the Japanese invasion. Tank man felt very distant by comparison." Thankfully, once his film was out of the country, the world looked favourably on the photograph. “My rolls of film were smuggled out of China the following day packed in a small box of tea and carried to Paris by a French student,” he recalls. “The transparencies were later processed, duplicated and distributed from Magnum’s office in Paris." “Images and reports of the tank man incident emerged slowly. The first the world saw of the tank man was on television on 5 June. Television drew the world’s attention to the incident. George Bush Senior referenced it after watching CNN. ‘I was very moved today’, Bush said at a news conference on the morning of 5 June, ‘by the bravery of that one young individual that stood alone in front of the tanks, rolling down the avenue there.’”Source: Phaidon
Leonard Freed
United States
1929 | † 2006
Leonard Freed was a documentary photojournalist and longtime Magnum member. He was born to Jewish, working-class parents of Eastern European descent. Freed had wanted to be a painter, but began taking photographs in the Netherlands and discovered a new passion. He traveled in Europe and Africa before returning to the United States where he attended the New School and studied with Alexey Brodovitch, the art director of Harper's Bazaar. In 1958 he moved to Amsterdam to photograph its Jewish community. Through the 1960s he continued to work as a freelance photojournalist, traveling widely. He documented such events and subjects as the Civil Rights movement in America (1964–65), the Yom Kippur War in 1973, and the New York City police department (1972–79). His career blossomed during the American civil rights movement, when he traveled the country with Martin Luther King, Jr. in his celebrated march across the US from Alabama to Washington. This journey gave him the opportunity to produce his 1968 book, Black in White America, which brought considerable attention. His work on New York City law enforcement also led to a book, Police Work which was published in 1980. Early in Freed's career, Edward Steichen purchased three photographs from Freed for the collection of the Museum of Modern Art.[ In 1967, Cornell Capa selected Freed as one of five photographers to participate in his "Concerned Photography" exhibition. Freed joined Magnum Photos in 1972. Publications to which Freed contributed over the years included Der Spiegel, Die Zeit, Fortune, Libération, Life, Look, Paris-Match, Stern, and The Sunday Times Magazine of London. In later years, Freed continued shooting photographs in Italy, Turkey, Germany, Lebanon and the U.S. He also shot four films for Japanese, Dutch and Belgian television.Source: Wikipedia Born in Brooklyn, New York, to working-class Jewish parents of Eastern European descent, Leonard Freed first wanted to become a painter. However, he began taking photographs while in the Netherlands in 1953, and discovered that this was where his passion lay. In 1954, after trips through Europe and North Africa, he returned to the United States and studied in Alexei Brodovitch's 'design laboratory'. He moved to Amsterdam in 1958 and photographed the Jewish community there. He pursued this concern in numerous books and films, examining German society and his own Jewish roots; his book on the Jews in Germany was published in 1961, and Made in Germany, about post-war Germany, appeared in 1965. Working as a freelance photographer from 1961 onwards, Freed began to travel widely, photographing blacks in America (1964-65), events in Israel (1967-68), the Yom Kippur War in 1973, and the New York City police department (1972-79). He also shot four films for Japanese, Dutch and Belgian television. Early in Freed's career, Edward Steichen, then Director of Photography at the Museum of Modern Art, bought three of his photographs for the museum. Steichen told Freed that he was one of the three best young photographers he had seen and urged him to remain an amateur, as the other two were now doing commercial photography and their work had become uninteresting. 'Preferably,' he advised, 'be a truck driver.' Freed joined Magnum in 1972. His coverage of the American civil rights movement first made him famous, but he also produced major essays on Poland, Asian immigration in England, North Sea oil development, and Spain after Franco. Photography became Freed's means of exploring societal violence and racial discrimination. Leonard Freed died in Garrison, New York, on 30 November 2006.Source: Steven Kasher Gallery
Jill Freedman
United States
1939 | † 2109
Jill Freedman was a highly respected New York City documentary photographer whose award-winning work is included in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, the International Center of Photography, George Eastman House, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the New York Public Library, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, and the Bibliothèque Nationale de France, Paris, among others. She appeared in solo and group exhibitions throughout the world, and contributed to many prominent publications. Jill Freedman was best known for her street and documentary photography, recalling the work of André Kertész, W. Eugene Smith, Dorothea Lange, and Cartier-Bresson. She published seven books: Resurrection City; Circus Days; Firehouse; Street Cops; A Time That Was: Irish Moments; Jill’s Dogs; and Ireland Ever. Jill Freedman lived and worked on the Upper West Side of New York City. The Joy of Photography "When I was seven I found old Life Magazines in the attic. My parents had kept the ones from the war and for a year I used to go up there after school, look at the pictures, cry, then go play softball. When my parents realized that I had found them and how they affected me, they burned them, but it was too late, those pictures had burned into my brain. Outwardly I was normal, but those images were always with me, and in my dreams. Even now I can see them, the man who had tried to escape the burning barn, the concentration camp. I majored in Sociology in college, then spent a few years traveling around Europe singing for my supper. I’d spend the days wandering around, searching for adventure, meeting all kinds of eccentric characters and loving their stories. When I ran out of money I’d sing again. I settled in New York, got a job, tried to figure out what I wanted to do. Something meaningful, not just work. I was starting to worry. Then one day I woke up and wanted a camera. I borrowed one. I had never taken a picture before, and as soon as I held it in my hands it felt good. I never had the sense of holding a machine. I read the instructions, went out into the street, shot two rolls, had them developed. I was thunderstruck. It were as though I had been taking pictures for years, but in my head, without a camera. “That’s it,” I said. “I’m a photographer.” What a relief. Photojournalism was always it for me. Those pictures in the attic had set my course. Those, and all the characters I’d met. To tell a story in the blink of an eye, have it printed so that millions of people could see it and wrap their fish in it, to have my pictures reach people the way those Life magazines had reached me, now that was doing something. I am self taught. I got a copywriting job to support myself and I started learning, devouring books and looking at good work, walking a lot, and shooting. Those early years were fired with an intensity and passion I had never felt before. I was obsessed and driven. I thought about photography all of the time. And my pictures, if no one else had liked them, it wouldn’t have mattered, I loved them. Sometimes I’d look at them and think, What if I wake up one day and it’s gone? What if it goes away like it came? With each paycheck I bought equipment and built a darkroom and when I finally made my first print, I was hooked for good. It was the first time that I had ever finished something I had started. My father used to say, “You blow hot and cold.” But it was magic, watching it come up in the developer. I still feel it. I worked hard, learning my craft. I like to work two ways, either on a specific idea or just wandering around, getting lost, snapping. Eventually, all the wanderings go together, and then I find out what I’ve been doing. Photography is magic. You can stop time itself. Catch slivers of moments to savor and share time and again. Tell beautiful silver stories, one photo alone, or many playing together to form a book. A photograph is a sharing, it says “Hey, look at this!”, it’s a miracle, is what it is. And when you’re going good and you get a new picture you love, there’s nothing better. That’s the joy of photography, and the fun." -- Jill Freedman Source: www.jillfreedman.com Freedman was born in Pittsburgh in 1939 to a traveling salesman and a nurse. After college, she traveled to Israel and England before taking up copywriting jobs in New York to sustain herself. She had not grown up taking photographs, but she said in New York one day she “woke and wanted a camera,” according to an essay she published on her website. She wrote that she was inspired by copies of Life Magazine she had pored over as a child. Looking back on a photograph from the early years of her career in a 2017 interview with The Guardian, Freedman said activism and protests had been the catalysts for her photography: "I studied sociology and anthropology and now realise that what I’ve been doing with my camera all these years is documenting human behavior. But I was taking pictures in my head long before I became a photographer. It was the Vietnam war that changed everything for me. I was angry and wanted to photograph anti-war demonstrations, so got my first camera." After her stint in activism, Freedman joined the circus for several months, taking mesmerizing photographs of clowns, chained elephants, and beartamers. Freedman applied a similar level of vigor and rigor to documenting the lives of public servants, photographing intimate moments of firefighters’ and policemen’s work. She followed firefighters in Harlem and the South Bronx for two years at a time women tended to not be allowed in these environments, offering her an unguarded view of their lives. She also took a positive view of cops and thought they faced unfair criticism. “I set out to deglamorize violence,” Freedman told the New York Times in 2015. In the 1980s, Freedman started to work less due to health complications, receiving a breast cancer diagnosis in 1988 and breaking her pelvis later. She had hoped to create one last photobook before she died, to be titled Madhattan, and was featured in the street photography documentary Everybody Street (2013), alongside the likes of Bruce Davidson and Joel Meyerowitz. The Steven Kasher Gallery organized an exhibition spanning four decades of her career in 2015 and, in 2017, a show devoted to her Resurrection City photographs.Source: Artsy
Gisèle Freund
France / Germany
1908 | † 2000
Gisèle Freund was a German-born French photographer and photojournalist, famous for her documentary photography and portraits of writers and artists. Her best-known book, Photographie et société (1974), is about the uses and abuses of the photographic medium in the age of technological reproduction. In 1977, she became President of the French Association of Photographers, and in 1981, she took the official portrait of French President François Mitterrand. She was made Officier des Arts et Lettres in 1982 and Chevalier de la Légion d'honneur, the highest decoration in France, in 1983. In 1991, she became the first photographer to be honored with a retrospective at the Musée National d’art Moderne in Paris (Centre Georges Pompidou). Freund's major contributions to photography include using the Leica Camera (with its ability to house one film roll with 36 frames) for documentary reportage and her early experimentation with Kodachrome and 35 mm Agfacolor, which allowed her to develop a "uniquely candid portraiture style" that distinguishes her in 20th century photography. She is buried at the Montparnasse Cemetery in Paris, France near her home and studio at 12 rue Lalande. Freund was born into a textile merchant family on 19 December 1908 to Julius and Clara (nee Dressel) Freund, a wealthy Jewish couple in the Schöneberg district of Berlin. Her father, Julius Freund, was a keen art collector with an interest in the work of photographer Karl Blossfeldt, whose close-up studies explored the forms of natural objects. Freund's father bought Gisèle her first camera, a Voigtländer 6x9 in 1925 and a Leica camera as a present for her graduation in 1929. In 1931, Freund studied sociology and art history at Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg, Breisgau, Germany; and from 1932-33 she studied at the Institute for Social, Sciences, University of Frankfurt under Theodor W. Adorno, Karl Mannheim and Norbert Elias (also known as the Frankfurt School). At university, she became an active member of a student socialist group and was determined to use photography as an integral part of her socialist practice. One of her first stories, shot on May 1, 1932, "shows a recent march of anti-fascist students" who had been "regularly attacked by Nazi groups." The photos show Walter Benjamin, a good friend of Freund, and Bertolt Brecht. In March 1933, a month after Adolf Hitler rose to power in Germany, Walter Benjamin fled to Paris on May 30, Gisèle followed him since she was both a socialist activist and a Jew. She escaped to Paris with her negatives strapped around her body to get them past the border guards. Gisèle and Walter Benjamin would continue their friendship in Paris, where Freund would famously photograph him reading at the National Library. They both studied and wrote about art in the 19th and 20th centuries as Freund continued her studies at the Sorbonne. In 1935, Andre Malraux invited Freund to document First International Congress in Defense of Culture in Paris, where she was introduced to and subsequently photographed many of the notable French artists of her day. Freund befriended the famed literary partners, Sylvia Beach of Shakespeare and Company, and Adrienne Monnier of Maison des Amis des Livres. In 1935, Monnier arranged a marriage of convenience for Freund with Pierre Blum so that Freund could obtain a visa to remain in France legally (they officially divorced after the war in 1948). In 1936, while Sylvia Beach was visiting the United States, Freund moved into Monnier and Beach's shared apartment and they became intimates. When Beach returned, she ended her intimate relationship with Monnier yet maintained a strong friendship with both Monnier and Freund. Freund finished her Ph.D. in Sociology and Art at the Sorbonne in 1936, and Monnier published the doctoral dissertation as "La photographie en France au dix-neuvieme siècle," under the La Maison des Amis des Livres imprint by Monnier. Monnier introduced Gisèle Freund to the artists and writers who would prove her most captivating subjects. Later that year, Freund became internationally famous with her photojournalistic piece, Northern England, which was published in Life magazine on December 14, 1936 and showed the effects of the depression in England. No magazine in France could publish color photographs at that time, so Freund's work with Life—one of the first color mass magazines—would start a lifelong relationship between the photographer and magazine. In 1938, Monnier suggested that Freund photograph James Joyce for his upcoming book, Finnegans Wake. Joyce, who disliked being photographed, invited Gisèle Freund to his Paris flat for a private screening of her previous work. He was impressed enough by Freund's work to allow her to photograph him, and over a period of three days, she captured the most intimate portraits of Joyce during his time in Paris. In 1939, after being "twice refused admission to Tavistock Square," Freund gained the confidence of Virginia Woolf and captured the iconic color photographs of the Woolfs on display in the English National Portrait Gallery. Woolf even "agreed to change her clothes to see which best suited the colour harmony and insisted on being photographed with Leonard (and their spaniel Pinka). In some of the prints, Woolf is pale and lined, in others smiling a little and more youthful. The background of fabrics and mural panels by Bell and Grant adds to the value of the images; this was the inner sanctum of the queen of Bloomsbury where parties were given and friends came to tea. Just over a year later the house was destroyed in The Blitz." On June 10, 1940, with the Nazi invasion of Paris looming, Freund escaped Paris to Free France in the Dordogne. Her husband by convenience, Pierre, had been captured by the Nazis and sent to a prison camp. He was able to escape and met with Freund before going back to Paris to fight in the Resistance. As the wife of an escaped prisoner, a Jew, and a Socialist, Freund "feared for her life." In 1942, with the help of André Malraux, who told his friends, "we must save Gisèle!," Freund fled to Buenos Aires, Argentina "at the invitation of Victoria Ocampo, director of the periodical Sur. Ocampo was at the center of the Argentinean intellectual elite, and through her, Freund met and photographed many great writers and artists, such as Jorge Luis Borges and Pablo Neruda." While living in Argentina, Freund started a publishing venture called Ediciones Victoria. She writes, "In reality, I started this for the De Gaulle government in exile where I was working in the Information ministry, volontairement without payment." She also founds a relief action committee for French artists and becomes a spokesperson for Free France. In 1947, Freund signed a contract with Magnum Photos as a Latin America contributor, but by 1954, she was declared persona non grata by the U.S. Government at the height of the Red Scare for her socialist views, and Robert Capa forced her to break ties with Magnum. In 1950, her photo coverage of a bejeweled Eva Peron for Life magazine caused a diplomatic stir between the United States and Argentina and upset many of Peron's supporters—the ostentatious photographs went against the official party line of austerity; Life Magazine was blacklisted in Argentina, and once again, Freund had to escape a country with her negatives. She moved to Mexico and became friends with Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo, Alfaro Siqueiros, and José Clemente Orozco. In 1953, she moved back to Paris permanently. Over the life of her career, she went on over 80 photojournalism assignments, primarily for Life and Time, but also Du, The Sunday Times (London), Vu, Picture Post, Weekly Illustrated, and Paris Match, among others. From the 1960s onward, Freund continued to write, and her reputation as an important portrait photographer grew with each successive exhibition. Gisèle Freund is now celebrated as one of the best portrait photographers of the twentieth century: Upon her death, "President Jacques Chirac praised her as 'one of the world's greatest photographers."Source: Wikipedia Ms. Freund was one of Europe's most prominent photographers and a pillar among French feminist intellectuals after settling in Paris in the 1930s. Born to a wealthy Jewish family, she became a student activist who battled the rise of Hitler's national socialism. She studied sociology in Frankfurt but was forced to flee in 1933, escaping as police were about to arrest her. In Paris, Gisèle Freund pursued doctoral studies at the Sorbonne, where her enthusiasm for photography was met with skepticism. She met militant feminist writer Adrienne Monnier while browsing at La Maison des Amis du Livre, Monnier's book shop on the Left Bank. The shop was frequented by the likes of Simone de Beauvoir, Andre Gide, Ernest Hemingway, James Joyce, Jean-Paul Sartre and Paul Valery. Monnier became her lifelong mentor and companion, introducing her to the Parisian intellectual set and encouraging her to pursue photography. In 1935, Ms. Freund executed a widely acclaimed series of photographs, documenting the misery of British coal miners, and met Andre Malraux. Her portrait of the author of Man's Fate--wrapped in a trench coat with a cigarette dangling from his mouth--is among her most well-known photographs. Her use of color clashed with the prevailing style of retouched black-and-white studio portraits, but she persevered, saying color "was closer to life." Gisèle Freund specialized in conveying attitudes. She focused on hands, posture and clothing. Some of her most famous photographs appeared in Life and Time magazines. The Nazi invasion of France in 1940 interrupted her career. Gisèle Freund fled again, to southern France and later Argentina, where she worked until the war's end in 1945. She returned to France, where she earned an international reputation as the photographer of Jean Cocteau, De Beauvoir, Joyce, and Sartre, among others. Her works include Three Days With Joyce, a collection of black-and-white photographs showing the Irish writer with friends and family, and correcting proofs of his novel Finnegan's Wake. "Freund was involved in the lives of the artists and writers she photographed," said art critic Ann Cremin, who knew Ms. Freund. "She was more of a witness than a reporter." In later years, Gisèle Freund became well-known in her adopted country, winning the National Grand Prize for Photography in 1980. She took the official photograph at the presidential inauguration of Socialist Francois Mitterrand in 1981. She gave up photography in the mid-1980s.Source: Washington Post
Lee Friedlander
United States
1934
Lee Friedlander (born July 14, 1934) is an American photographer and artist. In the 1960s and 70s, working primarily with 35mm cameras and black and white film, Friedlander evolved an influential and often imitated visual language of urban "social landscape," with many of his photographs including fragments of store-front reflections, structures framed by fences, posters and street-signs. Friedlander studied photography at the Art Center College of Design located in Pasadena, California. In 1956, he moved to New York City where he photographed jazz musicians for record covers. His early work was influenced by Eugène Atget, Robert Frank, and Walker Evans. In 1960, the Guggenheim Memorial Foundation awarded Friedlander a grant to focus on his art and made subsequent grants in 1962 and 1977. Some of his most famous photographs appeared in the September 1985 Playboy, black and white nude photographs of Madonna from the late 1970s. A student at the time, she was paid only $25 for her 1979 set. In 2009, one of the images fetched $37,500 at a Christie's Art House auction. Working primarily with Leica 35mm cameras and black and white film, Friedlander's style focused on the "social landscape". His photographs used detached images of urban life, store-front reflections, structures framed by fences, and posters and signs all combining to capture the look of modern life. In 1963, the International Museum of Photography at George Eastman House mounted Friedlander's first solo exhibition. Friedlander was then a key figure in curator John Szarkowski's 1967 "New Documents" exhibition, at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City along with Garry Winogrand and Diane Arbus. In 1973, his work was honored in Rencontres d'Arles festival (France) with the screening "Soirée américaine : Judy Dater, Jack Welpott, Jerry Uelsmann, Lee Friedlander" présentée par Jean-Claude Lemagny. In 1990, the MacArthur Foundation awarded Friedlander a MacArthur Fellowship. Friedlander now works primarily with medium format cameras (e.g. Hasselblad Superwide). Whilst suffering from arthritis and housebound, he focused on photographing his surroundings. His book, Stems, reflects his life during the time of his knee replacement surgery. He has said that his "limbs" reminded him of plant stems. These images display textures which were not a feature of his earlier work. In this sense, the images are similar to those of Josef Sudek who also photographed the confines of his home and studio. He was awarded The Royal Photographic Society's Special 150th Anniversary Medal and Honorary Fellowship (HonFRPS) in recognition of a sustained, significant contribution to the art of photography in 2003. In 2005, the Museum of Modern Art presented a major retrospective of Friedlander's career, including nearly 400 photographs from the 1950s to the present. In the same year he received a Hasselblad International Award. The retrospective exhibition was presented again in 2008 at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Concurrent to this retrospective, a more contemporary body of his work, America By Car, was displayed at the Fraenkel Gallery, also in San Francisco. "America By Car" was on display at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City in late 2010. He is the father of cellist Erik Friedlander, and Anna Friedlander. Source: Wikipedia
Francis Frith
United Kingdom
1822 | † 1898
Francis Frith was an English photographer of the Middle East and many towns in the United Kingdom. Frith was born in Chesterfield, Derbyshire, attending Quaker schools at Ackworth and Quaker Camp Hill in Birmingham (c. 1828–1838), before he started in the cutlery business. He suffered a nervous breakdown in 1843, recuperating over the next two years. In 1850 he started a photographic studio in Liverpool, known as Frith & Hayward. A successful grocer, and later, printer, Frith fostered an interest in photography, becoming a founding member of the Liverpool Photographic Society in 1853. Frith sold his companies in 1855 in order to dedicate himself entirely to photography. He journeyed to the Middle East on three occasions, the first of which was a trip to Egypt in 1856 with very large cameras (16" x 20"). He used the collodion process, a major technical achievement in hot and dusty conditions. Photographs taken by Frith are held in the Conway Library of Art and Architecture at the Courtauld in London. When he had finished his travels in the Middle East in 1859, he opened the firm of Francis Frith & Co. in Reigate, Surrey, as the world's first specialist photographic publisher. In 1860, he married Mary Ann Rosling (sister of Alfred Rosling, the first treasurer of the Photographic Society) and embarked upon a colossal project—to photograph every town and village in the United Kingdom; in particular, notable historical or interesting sights. Initially he took the photographs himself, but as success came, he hired people to help him and set about establishing his postcard company, a firm that became one of the largest photographic studios in the world. Within a few years, over two thousand shops throughout the United Kingdom were selling his postcards. Many of his photographs were collected into published volumes. Initially these works were compiled by established publishing companies. However, by the 1860s, Firth realized that he could profit from publishing his own images and established the publishing company F. Frith & Co. Frith died at his villa in Cannes, France, on 25 February 1898, aged 75. His family continued the firm, which was finally closed in 1971. Following closure of the business, Bill Jay, one of Britain's first photography historians, identified the archive as being nationally important, and "at risk". Jay managed to persuade McCann-Erikson the London advertising agency to approach their client Rothmans of Pall Mall on 14 December 1971 to purchase the archive to ensure its safety. Rothmans went ahead and acquired the archive within weeks. Frith was re-launched in 1975 as "The Francis Frith Collection" by John Buck, a Rothmans executive, with the intention of making the Frith photographs available to as wide an audience as possible. On 25 August 1977, Buck bought the archive from Rothmans, and has run it as an independent business since that time – trading as The Francis Frith Collection. In 2016 the company completed a two-year project to scan the entire archive and now holds over 330,000 high resolution digital images. The company website enables visitors to browse all 330,000 Frith photographs, depicting some 7,000 cities, towns and villages.Source: Wikipedia Born into a Quaker family in 1822 in Chesterfield, Derbyshire, Francis Frith was a remarkable person, philosophical and devoutly religious by nature and pioneering in outlook. He was a complex and multi-talented man who had a formidable instinct for business. By the time he founded his photographic publishing company in 1860 he had already established a wholesale grocery business in Liverpool which was so successful that by the mid 1850s he was able to sell it for a price which made him a the equivalent of a multi-millionaire today. Frith had been a founder member of the Liverpool Photographic Society in 1853 – only 14 years after the invention of photography, 1839. Between 1856 and 1860, as a gentleman of leisure, he made three pioneering and sometimes dangerous photographic expeditions to the Middle East, taking bulky cameras, equipment and glass plates with him and travelling by boat, donkey, mule and camel. These journeys took him to Egypt, Nubia, Ethiopia, Sinai, Palestine, Lebanon and Syria, and established his reputation as an outstanding pioneer photographer. The photographs he took on these expeditions were marketed by the London firm of Negretti & Zambra as hugely popular stereoscopic views, and were also published in London and New York in limited edition part-works of prints, with sales totalling over £3 million in today’s value.Source: www.francisfrith.com
Jaromír Funke
Czech Republic
1896 | † 1945
Jaromír Funke (1896–1945) was a Modernist photographer and a leading figure in Czech photography during the 1920s and 30s. He was born in Skute? to a wealthy family. He studied medicine, law, and philosophy at the Charles University in Prague and the University of Bratislava but did not graduate and instead turned to photography. Funke was recognized for his play of “photographic games” with mirrors, lights, and insignificant objects, such as plates, bottles, or glasses, to create unique works. His still life’s created abstract forms and played with shadows looking similar to photograms. His work was thought to be logical, original and expressive in nature. A typical feature of Funke’s work would be the "dynamic diagonal." By the 1920s, Funke had become an amateur photographer and began to experiment with constructivism, surrealism, poeticism, and expressionism. He created unconventional works as a form of “pure” photography instead of the traditional reminiscing of other mediums such as painting or sculpture. During his photography profession, Funke published editorials and critiques about photography. By 1922, Funke had become a skilled freelance photographer and two years later he, Josef Sudek and Adolf Schneeberger created the Czech Photographic Society. From 1931-1935, Funke headed the photography department at the School of Arts and Crafts in Bratislava. Soon after, Funke taught at the School of Graphic Art in Prague until 1944. Alongside Ladislav Sutha, the director of the previous school, Funke published Fotografie vidí povrch in 1935. While travelling, Funke became interested in politically engaged photography. Bad living was created during the time period of 1930-1931 and was a photographic series that dealt with the issues of poverty. Funke later became an editor of the journal Fotografický obzor (Photographic Horizons) for several years. He published a number of works including Od fotogrameuk emoci which is understood to be his manifesto. As travelling was limited during World War 2 in 1939, Funke photographed close to home in Louny, Prague and sometimes Kolin. On March 22, 1945 in Kolin, Funke required an immediate operation for intestine damage but the procedure could not be executed as it was during an air raid alarm and he died.Source: Wikipedia Jaromír Funke (1896–1945) studied medicine, law and philosophy at Charles University in Prague but did not graduate. Instead he concentrated on becoming a professional freelance photographer. By 1922 he was a leader of the young opposition movement in photography and a founder of the Czech Society of Photography (1924) whose mission was to create photography that would fulfil new social functions. In his work Funke managed to combine some of the leading trends in modernist European photography, uniting constructivism and functionalism with surrealism and social commentary, with traditional Czech aesthetics. His interest in modernist ideas led him to make clearly focused studies of simple objects. As the decade progressed, he turned to the production of carefully arranged still lifes emphasizing abstract form and the play of light and shadow. During this time he also produced several important series of photographs, including two inspired by the images of Eugène Atget: Reflexy (Reflections, 1929) and as trvá (Time Persists, 1930-34). Funke was also influential as a teacher, first at the School of Arts and Crafts, Bratislava (1931-34/35), which followed a Bauhaus-inspired curriculum, and then at the State School of Graphic Arts, Prague (1935-44). While in Bratislava, he became interested in social documentary photography and joined the leftist group Sociofoto, which was concerned with recording the living conditions of the poor. Throughout his career Funke published articles and critical reviews dealing with photography. From 1939-41 he worked with Josef Ehm to edit the magazine Fotografik obzor (Photographic Horizon).Source: Howard Greenberg Gallery
Paul Fusco
United States
1930 | † 2020
John Paul Fusco (August 2, 1930 – July 15, 2020) was an American photojournalist. Fusco is known in particular for his photographs of Robert F. Kennedy's funeral train, the 1966 Delano Grape strike and the human toll of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. Fusco began his career as a photographer for Look magazine, and was a member of Magnum Photos from 1973 until his death in 2020. Paul Fusco was born in Leominster, Massachusetts, and started pursuing photography as a hobby at the age of 14. During the Korean War, from 1951 to 1953, he gained more experience while he worked as a photographer for the United States Army Signal Corps. He first studied at Drake University and in 1957 received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in photojournalism from Ohio University. He then moved to New York City to work professionally as a photographer. Fusco first worked for Look Magazine in New York City. While working there, in 1968, he took what would become a well-known series of photographs of mourners along the route of Robert F. Kennedy's funeral train. His photography often documented social issues and injustices, such as poverty, ghetto life, the early days of the HIV crisis, and cultural experimentation across America. His 1966 photos of California's Delano grape strike documented migrant farmworkers' struggles to form a union, supported by Caesar Chavez. The photos were released as a book, with text by George D. Horowitz, titled La Causa: The California Grape Strike. Fusco moved to Mill Valley, California in the 1970s. In 1973 he became an associate of Magnum Photos and a full member a year later. Over the years, Fusco also contributed to such publications as Life, Mother Jones, The New York Times Magazine, Newsweek, Psychology Today, and TIME Magazine. Fusco also worked internationally covering events in Europe, the Middle East, and Southeast Asia. In the late 1990s, he spent two months making photographs of the lingering effects of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in Belarus, eventually published in the book Chernobyl Legacy, which featured a foreword by Kofi Annan. In the early 2000s, Fusco pursued a personal project he called Bitter Fruit, documenting the funerals of US service members killed in the Iraq War. He left Mill Valley for New Jersey in 1993, but later returned to California, in 2009, to live in Marin County. Fusco died on July 15, 2020, aged 89, in San Anselmo, California. Many of his photographs are in the Magnum Photos archive currently held at the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas at Austin. Two hundred of his photographs of the United Farm Workers Organizing Committee and Caesar Chavez, taken during a farm worker's strike in Delano, California, are held by the Library of Congress, as are 1,800 Kodachrome slides taken in June 1968 from the funeral train carrying Robert Kennedy's body from New York City to Washington, D.C., for burial in Arlington National Cemetery.Source: Wikipedia
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