12 May 2010

Pittsburgh Jazz Noir ~ W. Eugene Smith

White Rose Bar sign from the fourth-floor window of
821 Sixth Aven
ue (c. 1957–1964). Photograph ©
W Eugene
Smith Archive at the Centre for Creative Photography,
University of
Arizona/Heirs of W Eugene Smith.

In the late fifties and early sixties W. Eugene Smith devoted eight years to what has become known as The Jazz Loft Project. What started as a chronicle of Pittsburgh spiraled into a massive photographic and audio undertaking that, until now, seems to have remained something of a mess. Sam Stephenson has recently edited a book from the materials; you can find an accompanying web page here.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm invariably wrong but I thought that the Jazz Loft project was Smith locked into his NYC apartment hooked on amphetamines and booze and taking some stunning photographs of Jazz musicians playing in his building and of the streets outside.

Separately the Pittsburgh project was a seemingly interminable photographic portrait of the city that resulted in him living there for years and kickstarting his amphetamine habit... I think there's already a separate monograph of the Pittsburg photos. Am I wrong?

17 May, 2010 11:41  

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