Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2000/09/08

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Subject: Re: [Leica] Re: LUGPhoto Quotes To Brighten Your Day
From: John Collier <>
Date: Fri, 08 Sep 2000 13:46:20 -0600

A marvellous counter point to this are the photographs of E.J. Bellocq, a
professional photographer at the turn of the century, taken in a southern
brothel I believe. The women look straight at the camera and are grinning so
disarmingly. It is not erotic at all even though they are naked. Here is an
URL for one example:

John Collier

> From: Robert Appleby <>
> Chandos, I think that one of the deadly traps of photojournalism in general
> is the urge to produce emblematic images which fail to transmit or even
> notice the particularity of place or person. How many pictures have you
> seen of a person afflicted with leprosy laughing with his kids? No, he has
> to be miserable because he's a leprosy victim, and therefore his personal
> experience must be disregarded in the pursuit of a larger theme. Or a drug
> addict enjoying a cup of tea with his mates? This is an insidious form of
> "invention", really a sort of propaganda, which it's hard not to fall into,
> especially when dealing with the exotic or "serious". Very little
> journalistic photography allows people to be more than symbols of their
> condition.