|Marion Post Wolcott speaking:|
As a documentarian in whatever medium, one cannot perform beyond her or his personal capacities, qualifications; of the individual’s comprehension, based upon experience, research, and general ability to understand the subject, and, most important, to emphathize with the people directly and indirectly involved. This was Ralph Steiner’s advice. "Keep in mind that behind every sincere photographer is a person with a head and a heart. As the painter, Edward Hopper put it, ‘The work’s the man; you can’t get something out of nothing’" Women in Photography Conference, Syracuse University, October 1986.
My principal concern is to challenge photographers to document, in mixed media if they wish, or even just record, in still photographs as well as film and video, our present quality of life, the causes of the present malaise in our society—and the worl d—the evidences of it. History, which will affect this and many generations, is being made, is right out there. A record of it might be useful in an old, new world. Women in Photography Conference
When I took the FSA job, I already had battle scars. I had weathered…the first weeks as a female full-time staff photographer on the Philadelphia Evening Bulletin…The ten male photographers with whom I was to work, immediately put out their cigarette butts in my developer, spit in and hypoed it, probably peed in it; threw spit balls into my cubby-hole darkroom until my aim and speed became better than theirs. Finally, I exploded—telling them I was there to stay…I told them how and when I could be very useful to them, and that I needed their help in return; that they could teach me about a Speed Graphic and how to develop and print for a newspaper, that they could openly use their accustomed language and the four-letter words which I’d heard and used, and would welcome the opportunity to feel free to use them myself, again. That did it; we reached a truce…soon each one confidentially telling me that the others were wolves and he was going to be my protector. (Women in Photography Conference)
A short biographical sketch of Marion Post Wolcott.
Linda Remembers MPW
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