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Dog Day Afternoons: Bits & Pieces (7)

Now we have a fresh example of the visual manifestation of systemic racism: The decisions made by NBC News, CNN, BBC, People magazine and hundreds of other news outlets to pair a formal, official portrait of accused murderer Ray Tensing, smiling and posing proudly in his police uniform with the American flag right behind him, with the mugshot of his victim — a glum Samuel DuBose in a white t-shirt. […]

Election 2016: Image World (2)

I have come to think of Donald Trump not only as exemplifying the Bad Clown but as embodying that nightmare’s apotheosis; he has turned himself into the Republic Party’s version of Steven King’s Pennywise. Indeed, these early days of the campaign resemble nothing so much as a remake of IT, with the rest of the pack banding together as The Losers Club, […]

All Greek to Me: APhF 2015

The diatribe of photographer and Magnum member Patrick Zachmann exemplified perfectly the knee-jerk defensiveness with which representatives of what I’ve come to call the Capa Consortium respond to any challenge to the Capa legend. One member of the audience asked me if I’d paid Zachmann to prove our point; I had to answer that he’d done so with no prompting from me. […]

Election 2016: Image World (1)

I cannot but note that this cultural moment, including Obama’s preacherly delivery of the June 26 eulogy for Rev. Clementa Pinckney and his assurance that all of this fits into God’s inscrutable plan, will reinforce the faith-based mentality of Christian true believers of all races. […]

Ends and Odds Encore

Wearing Sadakichi’s Hat

Last week I finally got to do something I’ve planned for years: have some pictures made of myself wearing Sadakichi Hartmann’s hat.

That calls for some explanation.

Scion of a German father and a Japanese mother, Sadakichi Hartmann (1867-1944) was born on an island in Nagasaki harbor. His mother died […]