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Max Yavno
Max Yavno

Max Yavno

Country: United States
Birth: 1911 | Death: 1985

Max Yavno (1911-1985) was a photographer who specialized in street scenes, especially in Los Angeles and San Francisco, California. The son of Russian immigrants, Yavno was born in New York on April 26, 1911. He had one sister. He was married at age 19 and divorced three years later. He died in April 1985 of complications resulting from a fall in a shower. Yavno worked as a Wall Street messenger while attending City College of New York at night. He attended the graduate school of political economics at Columbia University and worked in the Stock Exchange before becoming a social worker in 1935. He did photography for the Works Progress Administration from 1936 to 1942. He was president of the Photo League in 1938 and 1939. Yavno was in the U.S. Air Force from 1942 to 1945, after which he moved to San Francisco and began specializing in urban-landscape photography.

History professor Constance B. Schulz said of him: "For financial reasons he worked as a commercial advertising photographer for the next twenty years (1954–75), creating finely crafted still lifes that appeared in Vogue and Harper's Bazaar. He returned to artistic landscape photography in the 1970s, when his introspective approach found a more appreciative audience. Funding from the National Endowment for the Arts enabled him to travel to Egypt and Israel in 1979." He also captured a pre-Dodgers Chavez Ravine, a giant plaster leg on top of a building in West Los Angeles and a "nostalgic" shot of a cable car being turned around at Powell and Market streets in San Francisco.

His noted photograph of a crowd watching "sun-worshipping bodybuilders at Muscle Beach in Venice" sold at auction in 1984 for almost $4,000. He said he had spent three Sundays at the beach before the subjects "stopped flexing for his camera and resumed posing for each other." His obituary in the Los Angeles Times said that: Melrose Avenue photo gallery owner G. Ray Hawkins, who represented Yavno and exhibited his works, called him a "social documentarian" and noted that he had "a very special ability for combining composition and content while capturing his social vignettes."

Photographer Edward Steichen selected twenty of Yavno's prints for the permanent collection at New York's Museum of Modern Art in 1950, and the next year Yavno won a Guggenheim Fellowship.

Source: Wikipedia


Yavno graduated from City College of New York in 1932 and earned a graduate degree in business administration from Columbia University in 1933. Originally employed as a social worker for the New York Home Relief Bureau (1935), he was later hired by the Works Progress Administration to photograph city locations for use in theater set design (1936-42). Yavno joined the Photo League in the late 1930s, serving as president in 1938-39 and participating in several exhibitions. He became friends with Consuelo Kanaga, who mentored him in his photographic work. He worked with Aaron Siskind on his unfinished project The Most Crowded Block in the World (1941). Yavno was drafted into the Army Air Force that year, but remained on detached service in New York. He later moved to California, where he provided illustrative photographs for two books: The San Francisco Book, with Herb Caenn (1948) and The Los Angeles Book, with Lee Shippey (1950). In the mid-seventies, Yavno resumed noncommercial photography, expanding his terrain from the streets of New York City and Los Angeles to those of Jerusalem and Cairo.

Source: The Jewish Museum


 

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Russell Lee
United States
1903 | † 1986
Russell Lee (July 21, 1903, Ottawa, Illinois – August 28, 1986, Austin, Texas) was an American photographer and photojournalist, best known for his work for the Farm Security Administration (FSA). His technically excellent images documented the ethnography of various American classes and cultures. Lee grew up in Ottawa, Illinois and went to the Culver Military Academy in Culver, Indiana for high school. He earned a degree in chemical engineering from Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.(Source: en.wikipedia.org) He gave up an excellent position as a chemist to become a painter. Originally he used photography as a precursor to his painting, but soon became interested in photography for its own sake, recording the people and places around him. Among his earliest subjects were Pennsylvanian bootleg mining and the Father Divine cult. In the fall of 1936, during the Great Depression, Lee was hired for the federally sponsored Farm Security Administration (FSA) photographic documentation project of the Franklin D. Roosevelt administration. He joined a team assembled under Roy Stryker, along with Dorothea Lange, Arthur Rothstein and Walker Evans. Stryker provided direction and bureaucratic protection to the group, leaving the photographers free to compile what in 1973 was described as "the greatest documentary collection which has ever been assembled." Lee created some of the iconic images produced by the FSA, including photographic studies of San Augustine, Texas in 1939, and Pie Town, New Mexico in 1940. Over the spring and summer of 1942, Lee was one of several government photographers to document the eviction of Japanese Americans from the West Coast, producing over 600 images of families waiting to be removed and their later life in various detention facilities. After the FSA was defunded in 1943, Lee served in the Air Transport Command (ATC), during which he took photographs of all the airfield approaches used by the ATC to supply the Armed Forces in World War II. He worked for the United States Department of the Interior (DOI) in 1946 and 1947, helping the agency compile a medical survey in the communities involved in mining bituminous coal. He created over 4,000 photographs of miners and their working conditions in coal mines. In 1946, Lee completed a series of photos focused on a Pentecostal Church of God in a Kentucky coal camp. While completing the DOI work, Lee also continued to work under Stryker, producing public relations photographs for Standard Oil of New Jersey. Some 80,000 of those photographs have been donated by Exxon Corporation to the University of Louisville in Kentucky. In 1947 Lee moved to Austin, Texas and continued photography. In 1965 he became the first instructor of photography at the University of Texas. In addition to the materials at the University of Louisville, other important collections of Lee's work are held by the New Mexico Museum of Art,[6] Wittliff collections, Texas State University and the Dolph Briscoe Center for American History at the University of Texas at Austin.
Marilyn Silverstone
United States
1929 | † 1999
Marilyn Silverstone, who has died of cancer in Kathmandu aged 70, was one of only five women members of the Magnum Photos co-operative. Yet after more than 20 years of freelancing for publications such as Life and Paris Match, she gave up the glamour of photo-journalism to become a Buddhist nun in Nepal.Source: The Guardian Marilyn Rita Silverstone (9 March 1929 – 28 September 1999) was the eldest daughter of Murray and Dorothy Silverstone was born in London. Her father, the son of Polish immigrants to America, rose to become managing director, and president, international, respectively, of United Artists and 20th-Century Fox, working with Charlie Chaplin and other early film stars in London. The family returned to America just before the outbreak of the Second World War in Europe. Silverstone grew up in Scarsdale, New York. After graduating from Wellesley College, she became an associate editor for Art News, Industrial Design and Interiors in the early 1950s. She moved to Italy to make documentary art films. Marilyn Silverstone became a working photojournalist in 1955, traveling and capturing the range of images that her vision led her to find in Europe, Africa and the Middle East. In 1956, she travelled to India on an assignment to photograph Ravi Shankar. She returned to the subcontinent in 1959; what was intended to be a short trip became the beginning of a fascination with India which lasted for the rest of her life. Her photographs of the arrival in India of the Dalai Lama, who was escaping from the Chinese invasion of Tibet, made the lead in Life. In that period, she met and fell in love with the journalist Frank Moraes. Moraes was then editor of The Indian Express. The couple lived together in New Delhi until 1973, socializing with politicians, journalists and intellectuals, and diplomats. A number of Moraes' editorials had earned the ire of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and the situation deteriorated to the point that a retreat to London became the best course. Over the years, Silverstone's reputation as a photographer grew. In 1967, she joined Magnum Photos, in which she was only one of five women members. Silverstone's work for Magnum included photographing subjects ranging from Albert Schweitzer to the coronation of the Shah of Iran. Silverstone's conversion to Buddhist nun was said to have begun when she was a teenager suffering from the mumps. She later explained that during this conventional childhood illness, she read Secret Tibet by Fosco Maraini and she said the book provided a key she long carried in her subconscious. In the late 1960s, Marilyn Silverstone had worked on a photography assignment about a Tibetan Buddhist lama in Sikkim named Khanpo Rinpoche and, when the lama came to London for medical treatment in the 1970s, Rinpoche stayed with the couple. At this point, Silverstone decided to learn Tibetan in order to study Buddhism with him. After Moraes's death in 1974, Silverstone decided to join the entourage of another celebrated lama, Khentse Rinpoche, who left London for a remote monastery in Nepal. In 1977, she took vows as a Buddhist nun. Her Buddhist name was Bhikshuni Ngawang Chödrön, or Ani Marilyn to her close friends. In her new life in Kathmandu, she researched the vanishing customs of Rajasthan and the Himalayan kingdoms. In 1999, Ngawang Chödrön returned to the United States for cancer treatment and she learned that she was terminally ill. She was clear that she wanted to die in Nepal, her home for the past 25 years. However, no airline would carry a passenger in her fragile condition. She resolved the impasse by persuading a doctor on vacation to accompany her on the return to Kathmandu. The journey was fraught with difficulties. She was barely conscious during the trip and a stopover was necessary in Vienna. She died in 1999 in a Buddhist monastery near Katmandu where she had worked to establish and maintain. At the time of Silverstone's death, the preparation of an exhibition at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery featuring her work and that of other Magnum photographers was nearing completion. The University of St Andrews hosted a seminar in conjunction with this exhibition, and as Silverstone had just recently died, the seminar became an opportunity for her peers to celebrate her life and career. Source: Wikipedia Born in London in 1929, Marilyn Silverstone graduated from Wellesley College in Massachusetts, then worked as an associate editor for Art News, Industrial Design, and Interiors during the 1950s. She also served as an associate producer and historical researcher for an Academy Award-winning series of films on painters. In 1955 she began to photograph professionally as a freelancer with the Nancy Palmer Agency, New York, working in Asia, Africa, Europe, Central America and the Soviet Union. In 1959, she was sent on a three-month assignment to India, but ended up moving to New Delhi and was based there until 1973. During that time she produced the books Bala Child of India (1962) and Ghurkas and Ghosts (1964), and later The Black Hat Dances (1987), and Ocean of Life (1985), a journey of discovery that aims to take the reader to the heart of a complex and compassionate Buddhist culture. Kashmir in Winter, a film made from her photographs, won an award at the London Film Festival in 1971. Silverstone became an associate member of Magnum in 1964, a full member in 1967, and a contributor in 1975. Marilyn Silverstone, whose photographs have appeared in many major magazines, including Newsweek, Life, Look, Vogue and National Geographic, became an ordained Buddhist nun in 1977. She lived in Kathmandu, Nepal, where she practiced Buddhism and researched the vanishing customs of the Rajasthani and Himalayan kingdoms. She died in October 1999 at the Shechen monastery, near Kathmandu, which she had helped to finance. Silverstone’s photographic estate is managed by Magnum Photos under the direction of James A. Fox, a former Magnum Editor-in-Chief, and present Curator.Source: Magnum Photos
Virginia Hines
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Qingjun Huang
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1971
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Bunny Yeager
United States
1929 | † 2014
Linnea Eleanor "Bunny" Yeager was an American photographer and pin-up model. She was born in the Pittsburgh suburb of Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania, to Raymond Conrad and Linnea (née Sherlin) Yeager on March 13, 1929. Her family moved to Florida when she was 17. She adopted the nickname "Bunny" from Lana Turner's character Bunny Smith in the 1945 movie Week-End at the Waldorf. The nickname has also been attributed to her portrayal of the Easter Bunny in a high school play. Bunny Yeager graduated from Miami Edison High School and afterward enrolled at the Coronet Modeling School and Agency. She won numerous local beauty pageants including in rapid succession Queen of Miami, Florida Orchid Queen, Miss Trailercoach of Dade County, Miss Army & Air Force, Miss Personality of Miami Beach, Queen of the Sports Carnival and Cheesecake Queen of 1951. Yeager became one of the most photographed models in Miami. Photos of Yeager appeared in over 300 newspapers and magazines. She also designed and sewed many of the outfits she and her models wore, at one time boasting that she never wore the same outfit twice while modeling. She designed and produced hundreds of bikinis when the two-piece swimsuit was a new fashion item and is credited with its popularity in America. Bruno Banani, the German fashion company, has developed a line of swimwear based on Yeager's designs from the 1950s. Yeager entered photography to save money by copying her modeling photographs, enrolling in a night class at a vocational school in 1953. Her career as a professional photographer began when a picture of Maria Stinger, taken for her first school assignment, was sold to Eye magazine for the cover of the March 1954 issue. She became a technically skilled photographer noted for, among other things, her early use of the fill flash technique to lighten dark shadows when shooting in bright sun. Yeager was one of the first photographers to photograph her models outdoors with natural light. Matt Schudel wrote in the Washington Post that her images were vivid and dynamic, going on to say, "She favored active poses and a direct gaze at the camera lens, in what could be interpreted alternately as playful innocence or pure lust." She met Bettie Page in 1954, and took most of the photographs of her that year. During their brief collaboration, she took over 1,000 pictures of Page. Along with photographer Irving Klaw, Yeager played a role in helping to make Page famous, particularly with her photos in Playboy magazine. American Photo magazine described Yeager's work with Page as "a body of imagery that remains some of the most memorable — and endearing — erotica on record" in a 1993 article. 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The famous still images she took of Ursula Andress emerging from the water on the beach in Jamaica for the 1962 James Bond film Dr. No are probably her best-known bikini photographs. She discovered many notable models. In the 1970s as men's magazines became more anatomically graphic Yeager largely stopped photographing for them, saying they were somewhat "smutty" and that, "They had girls showing more than they should." In 1998 she stated, "The kind of photographs they wanted was something I wasn't prepared to do." An exhibition titled Beach Babes Bash in the early 1990s at the Center for Visual Communication (at that time located in Coral Gables, Florida) featured photographs by Yeager of models from Miami on the beach from the 1950s. Another exhibit at the same gallery featuring Yeager's work was titled Sex Sirens of the Sixties. In 1992 Playboy published a retrospective of her work titled The Bettie Boom. Since 2002, Yeager's work has been exhibited in contemporary art galleries. In early 2010, The Andy Warhol Museum held the first major museum exhibition of Yeager's work. The exhibit, The Legendary Queen of the Pin Up, featured her self-portraits, some from her book How I Photograph Myself published by A.S. Barnes & Co. in 1964. The Fabulous Bunny Yeager an exhibit in 2011 at the Harold Golen Gallery in Miami also featuring self-portraits by Yeager was of photographs that had not been exhibited previously. Also in 2011 Helmut Schuster curated an exhibition for Art Basel at the Dezer Schauhalle in Miami titled Bunny Yeager: Retrospective to the Future featuring over 200 of Yeager's photos. Included were some images that had not been shown before of models including Bettie Page. In 2012 Bunny Yeager had two exhibitions in Germany, Funland at Gallery Schuster Potsdam and Femme Fatale in December 2012 at Gallery Schuster Berlin. The Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale held a 2013 exhibit, Bunny Yeager: Both Sides of the Camera featuring her photographs of herself, Page, and model Paz de la Huerta. The exhibit also included some of Yeager's first new pictures in twenty years. Yeager had a show at the Sofia Vault in Sofia, Bulgaria in October 2013. The Gavlak Gallery in Palm Beach, Florida put on an exhibit, Bunny Yeager: Selections from How I Photograph Myself in 2014. The Sin City Gallery in Las Vegas held a posthumous exhibit, Bunny's Bombshells, from June 5 to July 20 2014. She had her own studio in the Wynwood Art District of Miami, part of the Center for Visual Communication. There is a "Bunny Yeager Lounge" in Berlin which is open to the public and shows photos, memorabilia and movies. Yeager was also founding editor and publisher of a trade magazine for entertainment professionals, Florida Stage & Screen. As of 1998 her 24 books had sold over 1 million copies. Bunny Yeager was married twice, first to Arthur Irwin who died in 1977 and then to Harry Schaefer who died in 2000.[5] She had two daughters, Lisa and Cherilu. Yeager died on May 25, 2014 of congestive heart failure at age 85 in North Miami, Florida.Source: Wikipedia
Sergey Prokudin-Gorsky
Russia
1863 | † 1944
Sergey Mikhaylovich Prokudin-Gorsky (Russian, August 30, 1863 Russian Empire – September 27, 1944) was a Russian chemist and photographer. He is best known for his pioneering work in color photography of early 20th-century Russia.Prokudin-Gorsky was born in the ancestral estate of Funikova Gora, in what is now Kirzhachsky District, Vladimir Oblast. His parents were of the Russian nobility, and the family had a long military history. They moved to Saint Petersburg, where Prokudin-Gorsky enrolled in Saint Petersburg State Institute of Technology to study chemistry under Dmitri Mendeleev. He also studied music and painting at the Imperial Academy of Arts. In 1890, Prokudin-Gorsky married Anna Aleksandrovna Lavrova, and later the couple had two sons, Mikhail and Dmitri, and a daughter, Ekaterina. Anna was the daughter of the Russian industrialist Aleksandr Stepanovich Lavrov, an active member in the Imperial Russian Technical Society (IRTS). Prokudin-Gorsky subsequently became the director of the executive board of Lavrov's metal works near Saint Petersburg and remained so until the October Revolution. He also joined Russia's oldest photographic society, the photography section of the IRTS, presenting papers and lecturing on the science of photography. In 1901, he established a photography studio and laboratory in Saint Petersburg. In 1902, he traveled to Berlin and spent six weeks studying color sensitization and three-color photography with photochemistry professor Adolf Miethe, the most advanced practitioner in Germany at that time. Throughout the years, Prokudin-Gorsky's photographic work, publications and slide shows to other scientists and photographers in Russia, Germany and France earned him praise, and in 1906 he was elected the president of the IRTS photography section and editor of Russia's main photography journal, the Fotograf-Liubitel. Lithograph print of Leo Tolstoy in front of Prokudin-Gorsky's camera in Yasnaya Polyana, 1908. Perhaps Prokudin-Gorsky's best-known work during his lifetime was his color portrait of Leo Tolstoy,[6] which was reproduced in various publications, on postcards, and as larger prints for framing. The fame from this photo and his earlier photos of Russia's nature and monuments earned him invitations to show his work to the Russian Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich and Dowager Empress Maria Feodorovna in 1908, and to Tsar Nicholas II and his family in 1909. The Tsar enjoyed the demonstration, and, with his blessing, Prokudin-Gorsky got the permission and funding to document Russia in color.[8] In the course of ten years, he was to make a collection of 10,000 photos. Prokudin-Gorsky considered the project his life's work and continued his photographic journeys through Russia until after the October Revolution. He was appointed to a new professorship under the new regime, but he left the country in August 1918. He still pursued scientific work in color photography, published papers in English photography journals and, together with his colleague S. O. Maksimovich, obtained patents in Germany, England, France and Italy.In 1920, Prokudin-Gorsky remarried and had a daughter with his assistant Maria Fedorovna née Schedrimo. The family finally settled in Paris in 1922, reuniting with his first wife and children. Prokudin-Gorsky set up a photo studio there together with his three adult children, naming it after his fourth child, Elka. In the 1930s, the elderly Prokudin-Gorsky continued with lectures showing his photographs of Russia to young Russians in France, but stopped commercial work and left the studio to his children, who named it Gorsky Frères. He died at Paris on September 27, 1944, and is buried in the Sainte-Geneviève-des-Bois Russian Cemetery.Documentary of the Russian EmpireAround 1905, Prokudin-Gorsky envisioned and formulated a plan to use the emerging technological advances that had been made in color photography to document the Russian Empire systematically. Through such an ambitious project, his ultimate goal was to educate the schoolchildren of Russia with his "optical color projections" of the vast and diverse history, culture, and modernization of the empire. Outfitted with a specially equipped railroad-car darkroom provided by Tsar Nicholas II and in possession of two permits that granted him access to restricted areas and cooperation from the empire's bureaucracy, Prokudin-Gorsky documented the Russian Empire around 1909 through 1915. He conducted many illustrated lectures of his work. His photographs offer a vivid portrait of a lost world—the Russian Empire on the eve of World War I and the coming Russian Revolution. His subjects ranged from the medieval churches and monasteries of old Russia, to the railroads and factories of an emerging industrial power, to the daily life and work of Russia's diverse population. It has been estimated from Prokudin-Gorsky's personal inventory that before leaving Russia, he had about 3500 negatives. Upon leaving the country and exporting all his photographic material, about half of the photos were confiscated by Russian authorities for containing material that seemed to be strategically sensitive for war-time Russia. According to Prokudin-Gorsky's notes, the photos left behind were not of interest to the general public. Some of Prokudin-Gorsky's negatives were given away, and some he hid on his departure. Outside the Library of Congress collection, none has yet been found.By Prokudin-Gorsky's death, the tsar and his family had long since been executed during the Russian Revolution, and Communist rule had been established over what was once the Russian Empire. The surviving boxes of photo albums and fragile glass plates the negatives were recorded on were finally stored in the basement of a Parisian apartment building, and the family was worried about them getting damaged. The United States Library of Congress purchased the material from Prokudin-Gorsky's heirs in 1948 for $3500–$5000 on the initiative of a researcher inquiring into their whereabouts. The library counted 1902 negatives and 710 album prints without corresponding negatives in the collection.(Source: en.wikipedia.org)
Lynn Karlin
United States
Lynn Karlin's move to Maine after 13 years as a successful commercial photographer in New York City brought her back to her love of fine-art photography. Growing up in Queens, New York, Lynn graduated from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn. Her career took off when she was chosen as the first woman staff photographer for Women's Wear Daily and W, where, day and night, she photographed the rich and famous. Back then, her portraits featured everyone from trendy fashion designers to celebrities. She went on to freelance for the New York Times Magazine, House Beautiful, New York Magazine, Country Living, and other major publications. When Lynn left NYC in 1983 for a new life on a farm in Maine, she helped run a market garden while co-authoring, with Stanley Joseph, the now-classic Maine Farm: A Year of Country Life (Random House, 1991). She also took on assignments for garden magazines, winning awards world-wide. Her life after the farm led her down yet another road photographing the best-selling Gardens Maine Style (Down East Books, 2001), with writer Rebecca Sawyer-Fay. Then, in 2008, after seeing an amazingly beautiful cauliflower at a local farmers' market, Lynn began photographing and styling a series of still-lifes called The Pedestal Series which celebrate vegetables by elevating them to a place of honor-on a pedestal. Thirteen years later she moved from produce back to people after spotting a remarkable young man named Paul, whose ruffled hair and strong features led her in an entirely new direction: Stories in Profile, a series of portraits that have won international competitions and currently show in galleries and private collections from New York to Paris. Stories in Profile Lynn chooses her Stories in Profile subjects for their distinctive features. In these portraits, she celebrates the contours of the face, the qualities of hair, and other prominent traits that render each subject simultaneously elegant and mysterious. Lynn uses natural directional lighting in her studio to highlight topography, creating texture and dynamics and giving her work the painterly feel of 17thcentury master painters. This soft, directional light has an unpredictability that is energizing and keeps her alert and focused. While shooting, Lynn concentrates on design, form, light, and negative space as she reaches for a story to emerge through the profile of her human subjects. As a photographer, the more limited constraints of a profile are challenging. One senses a person's courage and vulnerabilities. She seeks to capture a personality distilled to its strongest form. Rarely do we look at others, or ourselves, from this side view. Each profile is a discovery as she sets out to record the moment when her subject's inner self emerges, direct and stunning.
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Monterey-based photographer Debra Achen was born and raised near Pittsburgh, PA, where she developed a passion for both nature and art. She studied a variety of studio arts, including drawing, painting, and printmaking in addition to her training in traditional film and darkroom photography. Her project 'Folding and Mending' won the September 2022 Solo Exhibition. We asked here a few questions about her life and work.
Exclusive Interview with Steve Hoffman
Steve Hoffman is a documentary photographer who has who spent the last dozen years working with and photographing the people that live the housing projects in Coney Island. He was the winner of the July and August 2022 Solo Exhibition. We asked him a few questions about his life and work.
Exclusive Interview with Aya Okawa
Aya is passionate about exploring the natural world and protecting ecosystems and wild landsAll about Photo: Tell us about your first introduction to photography. What drew you into this world? Her project The Systems That Shape Us'won the February 2022 Solo Exhibition. We asked her a few questions about her life and her work.
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