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HomeContentsOnline exhibitions > Portrait: LIFE Photographers

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LIFE Photographers

The release of the LIFE magazine image archives for non-commercial use will have a considerable impact on the improved understanding of the history of photojournalism. Questions are being raised on blogs about the danger that it will create an unfair competition between the commercial organisations that have to pay licensing fees for the use of photographs and the commentaries and educational resources that don‘t. Luminous-Lint is not a commercial organisation and therefore we will be able to explore overlooked areas in greater detail.
The first issue of LIFE (Vol.1 No.1, 23 November 1936) sold out the entire 466,000 run and within a year the magazine had a circulation of over a million. It included many of the greatest photo-essays ever produced including:
  • ‘Country Doctor‘ W. Eugene Smith (LIFE 20 September 1948)
  • ‘A Last Look at Peiping‘ Henri Cartier-Bresson (LIFE 3 January 1949)
  • ‘Spanish Village‘ W. Eugene Smith (LIFE 9 April 1951)
  • ‘Three Mormon Towns‘ Dorothea Lange and Ansel Adams (LIFE 6 September 1954)
  • ‘The Era of Sentiment and Splendor‘ Clarence John Laughlin (LIFE 24 October 1960)

It has been estimated that in the over eighteen hundred issues of LIFE magazine about two thousand photo-essays were published (Maitland Edey Great Photographic Essays from LIFE, Boston, New York Graphic Society 1978).
In this online exhibition of material from the LIFE archives the photographers themselves are examined - sometimes we know the names of the photographers but have little idea about how they themselves were photographed - either in self portraits or by their colleagues at the magazine. Some of the photographers whose work was included in LIFE magazine:
Ansel Adams (1902-1984) Margaret Bourke-White (1904-1971) James Burke Cornell Capa (1918-) Robert Capa (1913-1954) Ed Clark Ralph Crane Loomis Dean (1917-2005) John Dominis (1921-) Alfred Eisenstaedt (1898-1995) Eliot Elisofon (1911-1973) Andreas Feininger (1906-1999) Fritz Goro (1901-1986) Marie Hansen (1918-1969) Dmitri Kessel (1902-1995) Dorothea Lange (1895-1965) Clarence John Laughlin (1905-1985) John Loengard Hansel Mieth (1909-1998) Gjon Mili (1904-1984) Ralph Morse Carl Mydans (1907-2004) Gordon Parks (1912-2006) Arthur Rickerby George Silk (1916-) W. Eugene Smith (1918-1978) Peter Stackpole
Other photographers will be added to this exhibition as they are located. 



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