Monday, May 27, 2013

Memorial Day, 2013

Steve Ruark—AP
Marines Capt. Daniel B. Bartle, front left case, Capt. Nathan R. McHone, back left case, Master Sgt. Travis W. Riddick, front center case, Cpl. Joseph D. Logan, back center case, Cpl. Kevin J. Reinhard, front right case, and Cpl. Jesse W. Stites, back right case, Jan. 23, 2012.

"With troops dying on distant battlefields in wars increasingly out of the public eye, photographs of the simple transfer ceremony on the tarmac at Dover offer all of us a chance to pause, to recognize men and women who were deserving of a future, and who gave what Abraham Lincoln called “the last full measure of devotion.” The dignified transfers are one step in a fallen service member’s long journey home. Viewing the photos and remembering the people inside those caskets can be one small part in our role as a grateful nation."

Full post with slideshow: Honoring the Fallen: One Photographer’s Witness to 490 Dignified Transfers

Via Time LightBox

Friday, May 24, 2013


Fire hoses aimed at Demonstrators, Birmingham, Alabama, 1963
 Charles Moore, Fire Hoses Aimed at Demonstrators, Birmingham, 1963,
Gewlatin silver print, 11” x 14”

THE Magazine
June, 2013

The very time I thought I was lost/
My dungeon shook and my chains fell off
—African-American spiritual


In the preface to his 1953 novel Go Tell It on the Mountain, a poetic exploration of race and religion in the United States, James Baldwin made an important, if paradoxical proclamation: “I love America more than any other country in this world, and, exactly for this reason, I insist on the right to criticize her perpetually.” More than half a century after thethirty-one-year-old African-American writer released his book to a shifting American public, civil rights issues are still a vast and clumsy national topic.

Monroe Gallery’s current show of black and-white photographs is titled, simply enough, 1963, and covers that tumultuous year in American history with empathy and remarkable beauty. While human-rights concerns were gaining visibility in many parts of the country, changes must have felt imperceptible in many others, and the exhibition does a great job of visually encapsulating this disparity. Entering the space, one first sees photographs of Martin Luther King, Jr.—fitting enough, considering he delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech in 1963. An image of this iconic moment shows King at a podium, surrounded by listeners. Nearby,the picture Fire Hoses Aimed at Demonstrators, Birmingham, 1963, depicts three people being blasted with water from an unseen fireman during a protest in Alabama. The image is jarringly visceral and utterly captivating. In President John F. Kennedy Visiting Berlin, 1963, we see a gaggle of admirers clamoring around the figure of the president in a black car. JFK’sassassination would take place just five months later, a knowledge that, for the viewer, imbues the scene with an incredible poignancy. In a nearby photo, a barefoot Jackie Kennedy walks along the Palm Beach shoreline with her little son.

Undoubtedly, for most of us the show is a powerful history lesson. James Meredith, the first African-American to graduate from the infamously segregated University of Mississippi, is pictured surrounded by U.S. Marshals but his face retains a calm poise. A sobering handful of images memorialize the funeral of Medgar Evers, a pioneering and vocal advocate for African-American rights, who was shot and killed by a Ku Klux Klansman who wasn’t initially convicted of the crime. For the most part, the other half of the gallery space displays work that’s less politically and emotionally charged. A particularly lovely composition shows Steve McQueen and his wife relaxing in a hot tub, cigarettes and wine goblets in hand. The next photograph shows the be-sunglassed actor sitting on a sofa, holding a pistol. Next to this is a four-paneled composition of Sean Connery, posing with a sly grin and a gun. An image of Elizabeth Taylor as Cleopatra and a handful of photos of athletes like Arnold Palmer and Sandy Koufax round out this part of the show. These shots are no doubt meant to inject a little levity, but I thought the placement of images that either depict violence or else strongly suggest it, coupled with Hollywoodstyle showiness and triumphant moments in sports history, made for an incompatible and somewhat unpalatable juxtaposition.

In 1963, ten years after he spoke of his conflicted relationship with America, James Baldwin penned a letter to his teenage nephew, elaborating on what he called “my dispute with my country.” In it, he warns the boy that though people know better than to behave out of fear and hate, they often “find it very difficult to act on what they know.… To act is to be committed and to be committed is to be in danger.” Fifty years after this letter was written, it can still be said that the politicians who ostensibly represent us are afraid to be committed to a strong position when it comes to making decisions on issues like gun control and same-sex marriage. There’s a potentially squirmy reaction from photography lovers who walk into Monroe Gallery and expect foggy landscapes and nudes, and that’s one of the reasons 1963 is such an admirably courageous little exhibition. More than a show, this grouping of photographs is really a meditation on an era that isn’t completely in America’s rearview mirror. In 2013, being an American and loving America can feel downright paradoxical, and though we can’t always make amends for the wrongs committed by our nation in her past, the work in this show seems to quietly remind us that through learning and remembering, we can pave the way for a kinder future.

—Iris McLister

Thursday, May 23, 2013

"a damaging setback for press freedom in the United States"

Via Committee To Protect Journalists

May 21, 2013
Attorney General Eric Holder
Deputy Attorney General James Cole
U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20530-0001

Via fax

Dear Attorney General Holder and Deputy Attorney General Cole:

The Committee to Protect Journalists was founded 32 years ago to fight for the rights of journalists around the world and defend their ability to report the news without fear of reprisal. Throughout our history our work has exposed abuses committed against frontline journalists covering conflict or working in repressive societies.

Our board of directors rarely has seen the need to raise its collective voice against U.S. government actions that threaten newsgathering. Today, however, we do see that need: We write you to vigorously protest the secret seizing of phone records of The Associated Press. The overly broad scope of the secret subpoena and the lack of notification to the AP by the Justice Department represent a damaging setback for press freedom in the United States.

We share the concerns of the AP, as expressed in a letter sent to you by President and CEO Gary Pruitt, and join the organization in demanding the confiscated materials be returned and the originals destroyed. (We note, for your information, that AP Executive Editor Kathleen Carroll is vice chairman of CPJ's board of directors).

The actions of your department undermine press freedom in this country. Just as troubling, they set a terrible example for the rest of the world, where governments routinely justify intervention in the media by citing national security.

We note, for example, that President Obama met Thursday with Prime Minister Erdoğan of Turkey, where at least 47 journalists--more than any country in the world--are jailed, mostly on national security-related charges. In meetings with his counterparts from repressive countries, President Obama should be able to press these issues and point to the United States as a country that has not sacrificed its deeply rooted commitment to press freedom in the name of national security. Sadly, the Justice Department's actions make it more difficult for the president to make that case.
We urge you to take immediate steps to ensure that the press is able to carry out its critical function without further unnecessary government intrusion. We ask that the confiscated phone records be returned to the AP and that you take action to guarantee that any future efforts to obtain phone records or other information essential to newsgathering is communicated to the news organization in advance so that the action can be challenged in court as justice demands.


Sandra Mims Rowe
CPJ Chairman
Andy Alexander
Franz Allina
Christiane Amanpour
ABC News/CNN International
Terry Anderson
CPJ Honorary Chairman
Tom Brokaw
NBC News, CPJ Advisory Board
John S. Carroll
Rajiv Chandrasekaran
The Washington Post
Sheila Coronel
Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism
Gerry Fabrikant
The New York Times
Josh Friedman
Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism
Anne Garrels
Arianna Huffington
AOL Huffington Post Media Group
Steven Isenberg
CPJ Advisory Board
Jonathan Klein
Getty Images
Jane Kramer
The New Yorker
Mhamed Krichen
Lara Logan
CBS News
Rebecca MacKinnon
David Marash
CPJ Advisory Board
Kati Marton
Michael Massing
Victor Navasky
The Nation
Andres Oppenheimer
The Miami Herald
Clarence Page
Chicago Tribune
Erwin Potts
CPJ Advisory Board
Gene Roberts
Philip Merrill College of Journalism, University of Maryland
María Teresa Ronderos
David Schlesinger
Paul Steiger
ProPublica, CPJ Advisory Board
Jacob Weisberg
The Slate Group
Mark Whitaker
Matt Winkler
Bloomberg News

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Jet Star Roller Coaster, Iconic symbol of Hurricane Sandy devastation, demolished

Demolition crews removing roller coaster sunk by Sandy
By Daniel Arkin, Staff Writer, NBC News
A roller coaster that was plunged into the Atlantic Ocean after Super Storm Sandy ripped through the Jersey Shore last October and became a symbol of the devastation was being demolished Tuesday afternoon.

The partially submerged Jet Star coaster was once a popular destination at Casino Pier, an amusement park in Seaside Heights, N.J. But when Sandy ravaged the Jersey shoreline, destroying parts of the pier, the coaster tumbled into the ocean.

Watch live video at

Footage recorded at the scene showed demolition crews beginning to rip apart what remains of the former thrill ride. The crews are expected to use barges in the water and on-shore equipment to dismantle and uproot the coaster, Casino Pier spokeswoman Toby Wolf told NBC New York.

The demolition will take roughly two days to complete, Wolf said.
Casino Pier has reportedly asked Weeks Marine, the construction and dredging company hired to tear down Jet Star, to salvage a piece of the fallen coaster, which park officials intend to install as part of a planned Sandy memorial, according to NBC New York.

Prince Harry, who earlier Tuesday visited the storm-battered towns of Mantoloking and Seaside Heights with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie at his side, said that he saw the “American spirit” manifested in the coastal region's recovery from natural disaster.
The prince is scheduled to appear in New York City on Tuesday evening to promote British trade and a community baseball program.

Santa Fe Darkroom to Close After 19 Years

The Santa Fe New Mexican
May 14, 2013

Santa Fe darkroom rental firm going out of business

The popularity of digital photography is responsible for the demise of The Darkroom, a Santa Fe business which has rented darkrooms to film photographers for the last 19 years.
“It’s a labor of love,” owner Linda Wilson said of darkroom work. “I think there are still going to be people doing this kind of work, but there’s just not the need for it as there used to be. … I’m focusing on my personal work [film photography] now.”
Wilson said Diane DiRoberto started The Darkroom in the same spot at Suite O, 901 W. San Mateo Road, in 1994, then sold it to her four years ago. In addition to renting darkrooms, the business offered workshops and exhibitions of photography.
A farewell reception and exhibition of recent photography is set from 5 to 7 p.m. Saturday, May 18. That will be followed with a darkroom liquidation sale, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. May 25 and 26.
The Darkroom is unrelated to Camera and Darkroom at 1005 S. St. Francis Drive.


Saturday, May 4, 2013

On this day, in 1961, thirteen civil rights activists dubbed Freedom Riders began a bus trip through the south,

Freedom riders - picture of the day

A photographic highlight selected by the picture desk. On this day in 1961 the 'Freedom Riders' began their bus trip through the American South. Thirteen Freedom Riders left Washington, DC, in two separate buses with the aim of challenging segregated public transport in the South

Paul Schutzer/Time & Life Pictures/Getty

Related:  On this day, in 1961, thirteen civil rights activists dubbed Freedom Riders began a bus trip through the south, carrying on the fight for justice sparked by Martin Luther King Jr.

 Via PBS:   Freedom Riders is the powerful harrowing and ultimately inspirational story from award-winning filmmaker Stanley Nelson of this six months in 1961 that chanved America forever. This saga, based on Raymond Arsenault's book of the same name, features testimony from a fascinating cast of central characters: the Riders themselves, state and federal government officials, and journalists who witnessed the Rides firsthand.

Watch a preview of Freedom Riders below

Watch Video Watch Video Visit Website Visit Website

Friday, May 3, 2013

Birmingham Students Reenact Historic March, 50 Years Later

1963: 50 Years Ago

Via NPR: Listen here

"In Birmingham, Alabama, today, young people marched peacefully through downtown. It was a reenactment of not-so-peaceful civil rights marches 50 years ago, when a Children's Crusade drew brutal resistance from segregationists and changed the heart of the nation."

NPR's Debbie Elliott has this look back.

DEBBIE ELLIOTT, BYLINEToday, Birmingham's students had permission to miss class for their historic march.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Wenonah, file behind the foot soldiers. Center Point High School, behind Wenonah. Back up this way.
ELLIOTT: The youth lined up in the street beside Kelly Ingram Park, where statues depict the police dogs and fire hoses that young marchers faced there 50 years ago.
The Children's Crusade was part of the Birmingham campaign, a calculated move by civil rights leaders to take their fight to a city so violently opposed to integration its nickname was Bombingham.
Here's the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. explaining the strategy.
MARTIN LUTHER KING JR.: And I have the feeling that if we can get a breakthrough in Birmingham and really break down the walls of segregation, it will demonstrate to the whole South - at least the hard-core South - that it can no longer resist.
ELLIOTT: But in Birmingham, the resistance was fierce, led by Police Commissioner Bull Connor, the hardest of hard-core segregationists.
BULL CONNOR: You can never whip these birds if you don't keep you and them separate. I found that out in Birmingham. You've got to keep the white and the black separate.
ELLIOTT: The student marches in the spring of 1963 were just the beginning of a violent year that would culminate in the Ku Klux Klan bombing of 16th Street Baptist Church, where four black girls were killed. The scenes from Birmingham galvanized the nation and prompted President Kennedy to begin work on the Civil Rights Act. Now, 50 years later, the city is commemorating its crucial role.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Can somebody say Fred Shuttlesworth?
UNIDENTIFIED GROUP: Fred Shuttlesworth.
ELLIOTT: At this city hall ceremony earlier this year, foot soldiers of the Birmingham movement were honored with the inaugural Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth Flame Award named for the local preacher who convinced Martin Luther King to launch the Birmingham campaign.
Honoree Tom Ellison says he started marching when he was just 5 years old and hasn't stopped since. Ellison was a classmate of Addie Mae Collins, one of the girls killed in the church bombing. And his father was a local minister active in the movement. He says the city has come a long way.
TOM ELLISON: Just even being in city hall sometimes is a miracle to me because I lived down town. I lived a block away from 16th Street Baptist Church, and we knew not to even come this way.
ELLIOTT: Ellison's experiences being jailed and beaten in the '60s led him to his career as a medical doctor because he says local doctors back then were afraid to come and treat injured marchers.
ELLISON: You weren't going to risk the rage of Bull Connor to come down and help.
ELLISON: So most often people just went home beaten and bruised and bleeding.
ELLIOTT: Leaders say this 50th anniversary year is a chance to acknowledge the culpability of the city's institutions that furthered segregation, for instance, the local newspaper.
BARNETT WRIGHT: The Birmingham News really did not do what it was supposed to do in 1963. The newspaper failed in its mission.
ELLIOTT: Barnett Wright is a reporter with the News today.
WRIGHT: Well, one example is on May 2nd when thousands of students left school to march. The Birmingham News did not put that story on the front page.
ELLIOTT: The top stories instead were about a pet snake and two people who scaled a mountain in Katmandu.
WRIGHT: So a story 8,200 miles away from the front doors of The Birmingham News was more important than a life-changing event.
ELLIOTT: Wright has compiled a book called "1963: How the Birmingham Civil Rights Movement Changed America and the World."
Today, hundreds of students stretched for two blocks to reenact the city's watershed events. Woodlawn High School student Reagan Harris was among the marchers.
REAGAN HARRIS: I'm very blessed to be here today to do this because back then we couldn't even cross the street with each other. But now, everyone is holding hands and rejoicing together. So I think it's a big responsibility to come out here and do this today.
ELLIOTT: The march was upbeat, more like a parade as a college marching band led the procession. A far cry from the billy clubs, police dogs and fire hoses 50 years ago.
Debbie Elliott, NPR News.

Copyright © 2013 NPR.


 April was a cruel month for black people in Birmingham, Alabama, in 1963. So was May, and the months that followed, culminating in the explosion of a bomb in an church that September that killed four girls. Fifty years ago today, on May 2, 1963, teen-agers and children, some as young as six, marched in Birmingham to protest segregation. Many were arrested for parading without a permit, but the marchers came back the next day. They were viciously knocked down in the streets by torrents of water from fire hoses wielded by white policemen, were hit with batons or set upon by police dogs. Martin Luther King, Jr., who had been arrested in the city on April 12th—he was held for a week, during which he wrote his “Letter from Birmingham Jail”— referred to them as “the disinherited children of God.” The marches became known as the Children’s Crusade.

Memories of that tumultuous time came back this past weekend, during a three-day symposium marking the fiftieth anniversary of the Birmingham campaign sponsored by the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute. Birmingham, 1963, was known as Bombingham: there had been some fifty dynamite attacks on black homes since the end of the Second World War. Birmingham had another label: the most segregated city in the South. Black people could spend their money in downtown stores but were not being hired or served. Continue reading  Via The New Yorker

Thursday, May 2, 2013

"Life: The great photographers" exhibition in Rome


ROME.- Visitors look at Alfred Eisenstaedt's Marilyn Monroe, Hollywood, USA, 1953 during the Life. I grandi fotografi (Life. The great photographers) exhibition at the auditorium on April 30, 2013 in Rome. The exhibition showing some 150 pictures taken from 1936 when the US magazine Life magazine premiered will be open from May, 1 to August 4, 2013. AFP PHOTO / GABRIEL BOUYS

 A visitor looks at Alfred Eisenstaedt's “Albert Einstein in his Princeton studio, 1949”during the Life. I grandi fotografi (Life. The great photographers) exhibition. AFP PHOTO / GABRIEL BOUYS

A visitor looks at Lisa Larsen and Martha Holmes pictures during the Life. I grandi fotografi (Life. The great photographers) exhibition. AFP PHOTO / GABRIEL BOUYS

A visitor looks at Alfred Eisenstaedts “Children at the puppet show in the gardens of the Tuileries, Paris, 1936” during the Life. I grandi fotografi (Life. The great photographers) exhibition. AFP PHOTO / GABRIEL BOUYS

A visitor walks past John Loengard's The Beatles in a swimming pool during their first American tour Miami Beach, USA, 1964 during the Life. I grandi fotografi (Life. The great photographers) exhibition . AFP PHOTO / GABRIEL BOUYS

A visitor walks past J.R.Eyermans “Spectators with 3-D glasses at Bwana Devil’s premiere in Hollywood, USA, 1952” during the Life. I grandi fotografi (Life. The great photographers) exhibition . AFP PHOTO / GABRIEL BOUYS

A visitor looks at Joe Rosenthal's Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima 1945 during the Life. I grandi fotografi (Life. The great photographers) exhibition. AFP PHOTO / GABRIEL BOUYS AFP PHOTO / GABRIEL BOUYS

A visitor walks past VJ Day in Times Square, New York, NY, 1945 by Alfred Eisenstaedt during the Life. I grandi fotografi (Life. The great photographers) exhibition. AFP PHOTO / GABRIEL BOUYS

A visitor takes a snapshot of Robert Capa's “The falling soldier, Spain, 1936” during the Life. I grandi fotografi (Life. The great photographers) exhibition. AFP PHOTO / GABRIEL BOUYS

A visitor walks past John Loengards “The photographer’s eye, Brassai, Paris, 1961” during the Life. I grandi fotografi (Life. The great photographers) exhibition . AFP PHOTO / GABRIEL BOUYS

Via May 1, 2013

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

"We felt that to understand war photography we had to understand war"

Marine Wedding, 2006 - by Nina Berman
Nina Berman, American, born 1960.Marine Wedding, Ohio 2006. From the series Marine Wedding. Inkjet print, ed. #1/3. The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, gift of an anonymous donor.

In case you missed this:

reFramed: In conversation with WAR/PHOTOGRAPHY curator Anne Wilkes Tucker

Via The Los Angeles Times
May 1, 2013

Q: How, and when, did the idea of the WAR/PHOTOGRAPHY exhibit come about?

A: In 2002, the museum acquired the print of Joe Rosenthal’s flag rising on Iwo Jima that is reliably thought to be the first print made from the negative. Rosenthal took it on a Friday, the negatives were sent to the big lab on Guam to be processed and then passed by censors and the man who developed the negative made a print for himself.
Will Michels, a photographer who works for the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, came to me to talk about that print. For 10 years before coming to MFAH, Will was the restoration architect on the USS Texas battleship and in talking to World War II vets on the USS Texas during Iwo Jima, they talked about seeing the flag raised.
That discussion led to a small show of conflict photographs that the museum already owned, to more discussions about what we should acquire, and eventually to the decision to do an exhibition on the history of war photography

(click above link for full article and slide show)


Eddie Adams, Nina Berman, Margaret Bourke-White, Robert Capa, Alfred Eisenstaedt, Ashley GilbertsonYuri Kozyrev, Carl Mydans, Joe Rosenthal, Eric Smith,  Nick Ut, Sal Veder