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Magnum Photo presents 'Time of Change' review by photographer Bruce Davidson

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Working as both participant and observer, Bruce Davidson captures the defining years of the Civil Rights Movement providing an alternative account of African-American life during the 1960s

Bruce Davidson

“That first ride from Montgomery, Alabama to Jackson Mississippi changed my life because it was the first time I encountered oppression and pain,” said photographer Bruce Davidson during an interview in 2013 ahead of the 50th anniversary of the historic march from Selma to Montgomery.

Davidson stands tall as one of America’s most influential documentary photographers. During the Civil Rights Movement Davidson acted as both observer and participant. Between 1960 and 1965 he documented intimate, and at times painful, moments that would come together to provide an alternative visual representation of the turbulent period, capturing the dignity and struggle of African-Americans.

Recalling the march from Selma to Montgomery in 1965, Davidson recounts his approach to documenting the movement: “As I walked with the marchers, I photographed them by themselves and when they stopped to rest. I [had] pictures of them looking straight into the camera. They confronted the invisible audience with proud, determined looks.” Davidson worked without a long telephoto lens or a flash as he preferred to use natural light and never be further than a meter away from what he was photographing. It was this approach that allowed him to capture such strikingly intimate portraits.

 

" They confronted the invisible audience with proud, determined looks"

- Bruce Davidson

For complete read please visit Magnum Photos.

Artist News, 10 Photographers Who Captured the Grit and Glamor of L.A. on ARTSY

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"Known for palm trees, surfer dudes, and the film industry, Los Angeles and its history are characterized by the city’s laid-back living and Hollywood elegance. Yet L.A. has always been more than meets the eye, bursting at the seams with outsider culture and the idiosyncrasies of everyday life. Over the second half of the 20th century, the city was a muse for pioneering photographers, who both captured its beauty and laid bare its gritty realities."

Photographers include Elliot Erwitt, Robert Frank, Bob Willoughby, Julius Shulman, Garry Winogrand, Lee Friedlander, William EgglestonBruce Davidson, Mary Ellen Mark, and Catherine Opie.

WILLIAM EGGLESTON:

Left: William Eggleston, Untitled (Car Wreck) [From The Seventies: Volume two] (Circa 1970) Right: William Eggleston, Untitled (Topiary Trees, Hollywood) (1999 - 2000)   

Left: William Eggleston, Untitled (Car Wreck) [From The Seventies: Volume two] (Circa 1970)
Right: William Eggleston, Untitled (Topiary Trees, Hollywood) (1999 - 2000)

 

Finding suitable subjects in a cupboard of foodstuffs, an abandoned bicycle, and anonymous people on city sidewalks, William Eggleston and his intensely hued dye-transfer prints unequivocally thrust the mundane, as well as spectacles, into the spotlight, all while he led the charge into non-commercial color photography.

BRUCE DAVIDSON:

Bruce Davidson,  Surfers along Pacific Coast, Los Angeles, California , 1964

Bruce Davidson, Surfers along Pacific Coast, Los Angeles, California, 1964

Davidson has consistently brought this sensitivity and novel perspective to subjects ranging from gang members in Brooklyn to the Civil Rights struggle in the South. His images of L.A.—from a carefree surfer youth to the lonesome back of the Hollywood sign—exude this intimate attention.

Read about the excursions across and around L.A. by the several photographers highlighted on artsy.net