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Lewis Hine
Self Portrait
Lewis Hine
Lewis Hine

Lewis Hine

Country: United States
Birth: 1874 | Death: 1940

Lewis Hine was an American sociologist and photographer known for using his camera as a tool for social reform. His photographs were instrumental in changing child labor laws in the United States.

There were two things I wanted to do. I wanted to show the things that had to be corrected. I wanted to show the things that had to be appreciated.

-- Lewis Hine


Lewis Hine was born on September 26, 1874, in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. After his father was killed in an accident, Hine began working and saving for college. He attended the University of Chicago, Columbia University, and New York University to study sociology. He became a teacher at the Ethical Culture School in New York City, where he encouraged his students to embrace photography as an instructional tool. Hine took his sociology pupils to New York Harbor's Ellis Island, where he photographed the thousands of immigrants that landed each day. Between 1904 and 1909, he shot over 200 plates (photographs) and realized that documentary photography could be used to effect social change and reform.

Hine joined the Russell Sage Foundation's staff photographer in 1907, photographing life in the steel-making regions and inhabitants of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, for the landmark sociological study The Pittsburgh Survey. The next year, he left his teaching post to work as a photographer for the National Child Labor Committee (NCLC). Lewis Hine recorded child labor during the next decade, with a concentration on the use of child labor in the Carolina Piedmont, to aid the NCLC's lobbying attempts to abolish the practice. In 1913, he chronicled juvenile laborers among cotton mill workers with a series of composite pictures by Francis Galton.

Charlie Foster has a steady job in the Merrimack Mills. Huntsville, Alabama. Lewis Hine
Charlie Foster has a steady job in the Merrimack Mills. Huntsville, Alabama.
© Lewis Hine / Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.
Lewis Hine's work for the NCLC was frequently hazardous. Factory police and foremen routinely threatened him with violence or even death as a photographer. The immorality of child labor was intended to be hidden from the public at the time. Photography was not only forbidden, but it also posed a significant danger to the enterprise. Hine was compelled to disguise himself in order to gain access to the mills, mines, and factories. He worked as a fire inspector, postcard vendor, bible salesman, and even an industrial photographer documenting manufacturing technology.

During and after World War I, he shot relief efforts for the American Red Cross in Europe. Hine created a series of work portraits in the 1920s and early 1930s that stressed the human contribution to modern industry. Lewis Hine was commissioned to photograph the Empire State Building's construction in 1930. He photographed the workers in perilous positions as they secured the structure's steel framework, taking many of the same hazards as the employees. He was hoisted out in a specially built basket 1,000 feet above Fifth Avenue to get the best views. He recalls hanging above the city at times, with nothing below but "a sheer drop of nearly a quarter-mile."

Cherryville Mfg. Co., Cherryville, N.C. One of the smallest boys. Doffer. 1908. Lewis Hine
Cherryville Mfg. Co., Cherryville, N.C. One of the smallest boys. Doffer. 1908
© Lewis Hine / Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.
During the Great Depression, Hine worked for the Red Cross, photographing drought relief in the American South, and for the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), documenting life in the mountains of eastern Tennessee. He was also the chief photographer for the Works Progress Administration's National Research Project, which investigated changes in the industry and their impact on employment. Hine was also on the faculty of the Ethical Culture Fieldston School.

Lewis Hine was chosen as the photographer for the Works Projects Administration's National Research Project in 1936, but his work there was never completed. His final years were filled with professional struggles caused by the loss of government and corporate patronage. Hine hoped to participate in the Farm Security Administration photography project, but despite numerous letters to Roy Stryker, Stryker always declined. Hine lost his house and applied for welfare because few people were interested in his work, past or present. After an operation, he died on November 3, 1940, at Dobbs Ferry Hospital in Dobbs Ferry, New York. He was 66 years old at the time.

Group of workers, including boys and girls, standing outdoors. Lewis Hine
Group of workers, including boys and girls, standing outdoors
© Lewis Hine / Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.
Hine's photographs aided the NCLC's campaign to end child labor, and the Children's Bureau was established in 1912. The Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 eventually put an end to child labor in the United States.

Corydon Hine, Hine's son, donated his father's prints and negatives to the Photo League, which was disbanded in 1951. The Museum of Modern Art declined to accept his photographs, but the George Eastman House did.

Wendy Lamb Books published Elizabeth Winthrop Alsop's historical fiction middle-grade novel Counting on Grace in 2006. The final chapters focus on Grace, a 12-year-old girl, and her life-changing encounter with Lewis Hine during his 1910 visit to a Vermont cotton mill known to employ a large number of child laborers. The iconic photograph of Grace's real-life counterpart, Addie Card (1897-1993), taken during Hine's undercover visit to the Pownal Cotton Mill, graces the cover.

In 2016, TIME Magazine published colorized versions of several of Hine's photographs of child labor in the US.

In the early days of my child labor activities I was an investigator with a camera attachment... but the emphasis became reversed until the camera stole the whole show.

-- Lewis Hine




Lewis Hine was trained to be an educator in Chicago and New York. A project photographing on Ellis Island with students from the Ethical Culture School in New York galvanized his recognition of the value of documentary photography in education. Soon after, he became a sociological photographer, establishing a studio in upstate New York in 1912.

For nearly ten years Hine was the photographer for the National Child Labor Committee, contributing to exhibitions and the organization's publication, The Survey. Declaring that he "wanted to show things that had to be corrected," he was one of the earliest photographers to use the photograph as a documentary tool. Around 1920, however, Hine changed his studio publicity from "Social Photography by Lewis W. Hine" to "Lewis Wickes Hine, Interpretive Photography," to emphasize a more artistic approach to his imagemaking. Having joined the American Red Cross briefly in 1918, he continued to freelance for them through the 1930s. In 1936 Hine was appointed head photographer for the National Research Project of the Works Projects Administration, but his work for them was never completed. His last years were marked by professional struggles due to diminishing government and corporate patronage, and he died in 1940 at age sixty-six.

Source: The J. Paul Getty Museum


Born in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, Lewis W. Hine studied sociology before moving to New York in 1901 to work at the Ethical Culture School, where he took up photography to enhance his teaching practices. By 1904 he had begun a series of photographs documenting the arrival of immigrants at Ellis Island; this project, along with his pictures of harsh labor conditions published in the Pittsburgh Survey, brought his work to the attention of the National Child Labor Committee. He served as its official photographer from 1911 to 1916, and later traveled with the Red Cross to Europe, where he documented the effects of World War I in France and the Balkans for Red Cross Magazine. After returning to the United States in 1922, he accepted commercial assignments, produced another series on Ellis Island immigrants, and photographed the construction of the Empire State Building. Several of these construction pictures were published in Men at Work (1932), a book celebrating the individual worker's interaction with machines in the modern world. Despite the success of this book, Hine's financial situation became desperate and his photography was virtually forgotten. Berenice Abbott and Elizabeth McCausland learned of his work through the New York City Photo League and mounted a traveling retrospective exhibition of his work to revive interest in it in 1939.

Lewis Hine is best known for the documentary images of child labor practices that he produced under the aegis of the National Child Labor Committee from 1911 to 1916. These photographs not only have been credited as important in the passing of child labor laws, but also have been praised for their sympathetic depiction of individuals in abject working conditions. Hine labeled his pictures "photo-interpretations," emphasizing his subjective involvement with his subjects; this approach became the model for many later documentary photographers, such as Sid Grossman and Ben Shahn.

Source: International Center of Photography


 

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United States
1948
Christopher Makos is an American photographer and artist. He apprenticed with photographer Man Ray in Paris and collaborated with Andy Warhol, whom he showed how to use his first camera. He introduced Warhol to the work of both Jean-Michel Basquiat and Keith Haring. Makos's work has been in the permanent collections of more than 100 museums and major private collections, including those of Malcolm Forbes, Pedro Almodóvar, and Gianni Versace. His photographs of Warhol, Haring, Tennessee Williams, and others have been auctioned regularly at Sotheby's. Warhol called Makos the "most modern photographer in America". Chris Makos was born in Massachusetts, but grew up in California before moving to Paris, to work as an apprentice with Man Ray. Since the early 1970s he has worked at developing a style of boldly graphic photojournalism. His photographs have been the subject of numerous exhibitions both in galleries and museums throughout the United States, Europe and Japan and have appeared in countless magazines and newspapers worldwide. He has been a seminal figure in the contemporary art scene in New York. His book, Warhol: A Photographic Memoir, published by New American Library, chronicles his close friendship and extensive travels with Warhol. Makos' photographs have been published in Interview, Rolling Stone, House & Garden, Connoisseur, New York Magazine, Esquire, Genre and People, among others. His portrait of Warhol wrapped in a flag was featured on the front cover of the Spring 1990 issue of the Smithsonian Studies, the academic journal of the Smithsonian Institution. Makos' Icons portfolio is a collection of silkscreen portraits of Andy Warhol, Elizabeth Taylor, Salvador Dalí, John Lennon, and Mick Jagger.Source: Wikipedia Christopher Makos is one of the best and most-known photographers in the world, having photographed New York’s art scene since 1970, the punk and rock scene of the 1980s and 1990s in America, as well as the architecture and artistic scene of European cities. He became famous, making portraits sculptured with the immediacy that characterized the bohemian stream that cheered diversity and urged people not to fear to show what they were. At the age of 66, he still retains his youthful, artistic charm and intense energy, and he never stops preferring to live in the moment and follow his instinct. Chris Makos was born in Lowell, Massachusetts, in 1948, by an Italian mother and a Greek father. His Greek grandparents settled in Lowell in the 1920s and became laborers at the factory in the area, which was the occasion for their acquaintance and the creation of their family – the name “Economacos” became “Makos” after the installation of the family in the US. Little Chris grew up in California and moved to New York after high school in the late 1960s, with no plans or ambitions. He studied architecture in Paris, but not photography. His love for that art was created when he received a camera on his birthday. It was then the beginning, followed by an apprenticeship under Man Ray, who taught him to trust the “original impressions”. New York, in the 1970s, was the scene of a unique creative explosion with Chris Makos fitting easily into it because of his open mind, as he says, and immortalizing “a visual manifesto of the time” and its relationship with the “crude naivety” of the decade. Makos photographed the “madness” of New York clubs, including the famous frequenters of Studio 54, including Liz Taylor, Salvador Dali, Jean-Michel Basquiat, John Lennon, David Bowie and Mick Jagger, who left their signature on the stunning creativity of the Greek photographer. He himself was the starting point for many developments on the scene of modern American art and one of those who narrated the history of punk.Source: www.ellines.com
Joan-Ramon Manchado
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