Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Bruce Davidson: Los Angeles 1964

Art & Photography / In Pictures

Bruce Davidson: Los Angeles 1964

The acclaimed photographer's rejected project is finally published

Magnum photographer Bruce Davidson is best known for capturing people in social adversity. In the 1960s he documented the Freedom Riders, whose famous bus journeys protested racial segregation; later he spent two years befriending and photographing people in a brutally poor Harlem block on East 100th Street; and in the 1970s his flash shone a light on the vibrant colours of the then unsafe underworld of the New York subway.
In 1964 Esquire sent him west to photograph Los Angeles, in a series of images that has only just been published by Steidl, titled Los Angeles 1964. Without a strict memo or subject, Davidson wandered the streets, an Illinois-born New Yorker in the foreign world of the desert city. The work that Davidson brought back to Esquire was different to what they had expected. “The editor did not understand the pictures at all,” he says. “He gave them back to me and they stayed in my drawer until 1978.” (...)



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