Wednesday, October 15

Blog Action Day

This years Blog Acton Day topic is poverty. One of my all time favorite artists, Dorothea Lange, seems the perfect artist to feature for this topic. A documentary photographer, her most famous project was the documentation of migrant farm workers and their families during The Great Depression for the U.S. Farm Security Administration; the FSA was interested in the living conditions of those hired to work in cotton fields and farms in Arizona and California. Though she did document those conditions, her photographs told more of the workers and their spirit than of any environment. I love the way her framing highlights the pursed, determined lips, and furrowed brows. I am fascinated by the strong hands, worn from working in the fields and posed against withered faces. These portraits do more to highlight the character of the workers than any report on living conditions is truly intended to do. This is why Dorothea is one of the photographic greats; here are some of my favorites.


Anonymous said...

Did you know these photos were taken within 20 miles of where my Wallace grandparents & their families lived? They actually were on a farm tho', and not in a migrant camp so they were considered 'established'. They certainly could have stepped into any of these pictures and been indistinguishable from the subjects.

Kelly Visel said...

It doesn't surprise me; when I visualize pictures of some of the Wallaces I can see how they could be placed in these scenes.