Dorothea Lane – icon and artist

Started Apr 5, 2016 | Discussions thread
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HappyVan Senior Member • Posts: 2,397
Dorothea Lane – icon and artist

Dorothea Lange is an icon of the 20 Century. Famed for her portraiture of the destitute and desperate, she was the first photographer invited to exhibit a retrospect at MOMA in 1966.

http://kcpt.org/arts/dorothea-langes-museum-modern-art-retrospective/

Crippled by polio at an early age, and abandoned by her father at 12. She trained as a photographer at a time when the ladies of Downton Abbey were feuding over boyfriends.

Setting off to the west coast, she established her own portraiture practice in San Francisco. The documentary 'Dorothea Lange: Grab a Hunk of Lightning' provides insights into her early life.

http://www.pbs.org/wnet/americanmasters/dorothea-lange-full-episode/3260/

It provides a perspective on her evolution from studio photographer to witness with a social conscience. Teaming with economist Paul Taylor (her future husband), they produce the exquisite book 'An American Exodus: A Record of Human Erosion'.

http://www.amazon.com/American-Exodus-Record-Human-Erosion/dp/2858935130/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

Think of Life and National Geographic magazines at their peak. They owe much to Taylor and Lange.

Later, Lange also explored her artistic vision. But, her later works are obscure. So, why would the Museum of Modern Art honor Dorothea Lange who never trained or practiced as an artist?

MOMA is known for the enigmatic and subjective. Like Pollack...

http://www.moma.org/calendar/exhibitions/1553?locale=en

Artists have long used photographs as part of their artistic intent. Warhol and his Marilyns...

http://www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/warhol-marilyn-diptych-t03093

I've dabbled with post processing too.

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/50574037

Or, Jeff Wall...

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/57479664

Here's the $64k question. Can straight photographs ever make artistic statements? What do you think? Yes or No on portraiture. Any examples?

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