Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Russell Lee: American Mining Communities

Russell Lee: American Mining Communities. "...Russell Lee is probably best known for his work with the Farm Security Administration (FSA) programme in the USA during the 1930s. Along with Walker Evans, Dorothea Lange, Arthur Rothstein and others, Lee took photographs that were to encapsulate the hard times of the depression years.
In the 1940s, the Department of Interior commissioned a report on Health & Safety in the mines and Russell Lee was employed to illustrate the 'cold statistics.' As Lee himself has said, 'The work was extensive rather than intensive. We travelled awfully fast... we’d go into a mining camp and we’d be there maybe two or three hours and I had to get some pictures of what was happening and get into the houses and look around and get all these shots. Lee as always, worked hard, as his associate on the project writer Allan Sherman, remembers, He was one of the hardest working men I ever knew. Russell Lee has a great talent for establishing rapport very quickly with people. People simply trust him, and before you know it he is taking pictures which no-one else could possibly have gotten.'"


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