Tag Archives: humanist photography

Photography of Fred Stein

How often have you seen a photograph of a brilliant scientist, let’s take Albert Einstein as our example, and thought or exclaimed – “There! There is an individual with a fine mind and exceptional abilities!”?

More than once, we would guess.

Did you also wonder about the fine mind and abilities on the other side of the camera? The featured photo here and others that you may view on Artsy or www.fredstein.com, you may find examples of the photographic craftsmanship of Fred Stein.

According to Artsy, a website for promoting and selling of art, Stein was a German refugee, committed humanist, and early exponent of handheld photography. Stein fled his home country for Paris and later New York, where he captured both the poetry of the streets in joyful photographs and the luminaries of the 20th century in sensitive portraits. Despite the desolation and upheaval of the 1930s and ’40s, Stein found hope and beauty in city streets, taking photographs that conveyed his profound honesty and concern for his fellow human beings.

Eleanor Roosevelt, 1958
Portrait of Eleanor Roosevelt, 1958 (www.fredstein.com)

Meanwhile http://www.fredstein.com says that Stein was born on July 3, 1909 in Dresden, Germany. As a teenager he was deeply interested in politics and became an early anti-Nazi activist. He was a brilliant student, and went to Leipzig University, full of humanist ideals, to study law. He obtained a law degree in an impressively short time, but was denied admission to the German bar by the Nazi government for “racial and political reasons.” The threat of Fascism grew more and more dangerous and after the SS began making inquiries about him, Stein fled to Paris in 1933 with his new wife, Liselotte Salzburg, under the pretext of taking a honeymoon.

Our understanding of historical events and persons is often deeply influenced by photographs we have seen. The engaged expressions of Roosevelt or Einstein on this page may act to establish details of our individual and collective understanding of who these people were. That these images were crafted and informed by a humanist artist seems essential to comprehending the people and events that are captured in the images. These are humanist images and it is eminently humanist to reflect on the the rich and important humanist history and perspectives operating on both sides of the lens.

By the way, you may currently find other Fred Stein images for sale via Artsty. Viewable at the time this article was published are the wonderful Times Square in the Rain and View of Manhattan (New York), 1945.


Citations and References

  1. Featured Photo Courtesy of http://www.fredstein.com/
  2. https://www.artsy.net/

The views, opinions and analyses expressed in the articles on Humanist Freedoms are those of the contributor(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the publishers.

British Journal of Photography Issue 7898

The British Journal of Photography’s annual Ones to Watch issue is focused on celebrating the best emerging photography talent from across the globe. In the 2020 issue (#7898), 18 talented photographers have been selected from over 250 nominations by industry experts.

M’hammed Kilito caught our eye via an article written by Cat Lachowskyj titled Re-configuring the many perspectives of Morocco’s youth. In the article, Lachyowskyj quotes Kilito as stating that:

“I don’t want to suggest that everything is perfect in our countries, but it is our role to balance the narratives and show that we can photograph the humanist, courageous sides of our people as opposed to the sensationalist, orientalist views that we are accustomed to seeing.”

According to his website, Kilito is an independent Moroccan photographer based in Rabat, Morocco. He is represented internationally by Native Agency and is a co-founder and a photographer of KOZ collective. He holds a Master of Arts in Political Science from Ottawa University and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the University of Montreal. As a documentary photographer, he addresses issues relating to cultural identity and the human condition in Morocco.

Image Courtesy of M’hammed Kilito

Lachowskyj is careful to provide Kilito’s anti-imperialist concerns in the article “There are so many photographers in the Global South working to transcend preconceived notions of what our countries look like in order to reconstruct that narrative. It is very important for me to enact a counter-discourse to what is usually shared in the media.

Image courtesy of M’hammed Kilito

The very limited number of Kilito images available for study in BJP #7898 and on Kilito’s website display an overt preoccupation with the clothing and fashion of identity. Within the politics of 2020, it is extremely interesting and valuable to have the opportunity to consider the images not only within the narrative that Kilito appears to prefer but also within the context of a global history of humanism and humanist photography.

Regardless of where one’s thoughts may go in considering the political aspects of Kilito’s motivations – it is encouraging to see an emerging talent interested to photograph the humanist, courageous sides of our people.


The views, opinions and analyses expressed in the articles on Humanist Freedoms are those of the contributor(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the publishers.

Featured Photo Courtesy of: https://www.bjp-online.com/2020/08/issue-7898-ones-to-watch/

Auckland Festival of Photography: Marco Bischof

Unseen – Werner Bischof

Queens Wharf Fence • 23 May – 21 June

Hours 8pm 27 May | 1 June Freeview CH 200
Where outdoor exhibition 24 hrs/7 days – 89 Quay St, City
09 307 7055
http://www.wernerbischof.com
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Artists Werner Bischof
ThemeExhibitions

Auckland Festival of Photography is excited to present an exclusive outdoor waterfront exhibition of work by Werner Bischof, Switzerland.

Werner started his career in his studio in Zurich, Switzerland, where he perfected his artistic photography in “painting with light and shadow”. In 1945 he creates maybe the most significant photographic documentation of Europe in the aftermath of WWII. 1949 he joins Magnum Photos and travels two years in Asia: India, Japan, Korea, Hong Kong and Indochina he continues his humanistic photography, combining form and content.

His untimely death in a car accident in Peru at age 38 was the catalyst to maintain his photography in an archive for future generations.

USA is a series of work that brings early 1950s America vividly to life, yet Bischof’s tragic death at 38 meant the photographs were never printed during his lifetime. This is the first time they are being shown to the public in New Zealand.

Werner Bischof; Americana

Bischof was the first non-founding member to be welcomed into the then-fledgling Magnum collective, in 1949 joining Robert Capa, David  Seymour, Henri Cartier-Bresson and George Rodger. He had already become recognised for his pioneering use of colour photography, and was one of the first documentary photographers to take the format seriously. At the time of joining Magnum, most of Bischof’s contemporaries still predominantly worked in monochrome, a trend that continued well into the 1960s.

The photographs serve as a fleeting snapshot of a unique point in history: Bischof arrived in post-war United States from Switzerland in 1953, and stayed there for just one year, chronicling a booming and optimistic America through the eyes of an outsider. The 25 photographs that make up the series comprise few suggestions of interaction, they are instead stolen moments through shop windows and cars that blur past, evoking anonymity, and a contemplative look at everyday life in America during a period of immense change. (some text courtesy of the British Journal of Photography).

Thanks to Pro Helvetia – Swiss Arts Council, Panuku Development, Lion Foundation and Werner Bischof Estate.

Talking Culture – Artist Talk 12pm (noon)-1pm Wed 27 May 
10am-11am Sat 30 May
Marco will give a talk about his father, Werner Bischof’s photography ‘USA’ series. Read more and Zoom in to join the talk…

Further Information

  1. Marco Bischof on curating his father’s photography for a written and 16-minute audio article by Radio New Zealand
  2. www.wernerbischof.com/main.html

Feature Image Courtesy:ndmagazine.net

Museum of Modern Art ONLINE Exhibit: Dorothea Lange: Words & Pictures

Social distancing and self-quarantine present no barriers to exploring humanism, art and the human condition. In Ela Bittencourt’s April 30, 2020 Hyperallergenic essay she writes that “Lange’s instinct not to shrink from misery but to embrace it evidenced her profound sense of empathy. If we’ve grown a bit immune to it these days, the havoc wreaked on American life — on global life — by the COVID-19 crisis lends Lange’s humanist vision renewed relevance.” We couldn’t agree more.

The Museum of Modern Art and MoMA PS1, celebrate creativity, openness, tolerance, and generosity. We aim to be inclusive places—both onsite and online—where diverse cultural, artistic, social, and political positions are welcome. MoMA is committed to sharing the most thought-provoking modern and contemporary art, and hope you will join them in exploring the art, ideas, and issues of our time.

Exhibit

Toward the end of her life, Dorothea Lange (1895–1965) reflected, “All photographs—not only those that are so called ‘documentary’…can be fortified by words.” Lange paid sharp attention to the human condition, conveying stories of everyday life through her photographs and the

Lange’s Migrant Mother, Nipomo California March 1936

voices they drew in. Dorothea Lange: Words & Pictures brings iconic works from the collection together with less seen photographs, from her landmark photobook An American Exodus to projects on criminal justice reform. Presenting her work across many contexts—photobooks, Depression-era government reports, newspapers, magazines, poems—and alongside the voices of contemporary artists, writers, and thinkers, the exhibition lets us consider the importance of Lange’s legacy and of words and pictures today.

This exhibition is currently being presented as part of MoMA’s Virtual Views series, as a “museum from home.” Explore iconic works that redefined how we see America with a live Q&A with curator Sarah Meister and photographer Sally Mann, enjoy poetry and artist’s books inspired by Lange, and unravel the mystery around one of the most famous photographs in the world.