This has been a hella tough week! As anyone in the magazine publishing industry knows - fall is the season. This is the time when you have big pages, run 'important' articles AND make most of your money. Our tiny rag is no different.
So my brief time out of the office this week, on a research project, was supposed to further the no time-lots-to-do agenda, nothing more. Boy was I surprised when I stumbled on one of the largest, least known photo collections in the whole world!
It turns out that the Smithsonian's Museum of American History - as eclectic as the nation itself - houses the very first museum collection of photography in the U.S., started in 1896. Since then, in the name of history, of course, they have collected everything and anything to do with photography they could get their hands on. In a brief 3 hour period I saw 140 photographs by Erich Salomon, the German photographer who was the first to adopt the Leica and is cited as a major influence by Cartier-Bresson (this is what I was looking for); turn of the century Egypt by Francis Frith; prints from Diane Arbus (that she did herself), a collection of weird and wacky Polaroid cameras; a 'secret' portfolio by a rather famous photographer that I am not allowed to talk about, and some rather cool stereo daguerrotypes.
WOW!!! Who knew? This made my day and week - hope to visit explore again soon!!!