His camera became a political voice for the forgotten ones.
January 21, 2011 5:27 PM   Subscribe

"All my life I’ve focused on the poor. The rich ones have their own photographers."
Social documentary photographer Milton Rogovin's 'life was about seeing. In the literal sense, he was an optometrist. In a more figurative sense, through the lens of his camera, he saw things and people that were often ignored — the poor, the oppressed, the "forgotten ones," as he called them.' "A librarian in Buffalo's Communist Party, he was called before the House Un-American Activities Committee in 1957, and was named "Buffalo's Top Red" in the Buffalo Evening News. Losing business and facing intense social persecution, Rogovin turned to photography in order to create images that conveyed his desire for a more equal and just society, and to give voice to others who were persecuted, who were invisible to most." Mr. Rogovin died on January 18th at his home in Buffalo at the age of 101. Previously on Metafilter

If you're in Chicago and would like to see his work, the Gage Gallery opened an exhibition of photos yesterday, which will run until June 30th.

Many of his prints and negatives have been acquired by the Library of Congress and the J. Paul Getty Museum.

* New York Times: Showcase
* Reckon
* ArtNet
...and here’s a photo of him with his family, from the Buffalo News.

Amateur and Professional photographers are paying tribute to him on Flickr.

Interview: Milton Rogovin and Robert Hirsch.
posted by zarq (9 comments total) 22 users marked this as a favorite
posted by smoke at 5:55 PM on January 21, 2011

Also, this is how you do an obituary for people you respect. Wonderful tribute, Zarq.
posted by smoke at 5:57 PM on January 21, 2011 [2 favorites]

Thanks, zarq; I was not familiar with this photographer, these pictures are stunning and full of what I can only call love for his subjects.
posted by emjaybee at 5:58 PM on January 21, 2011 [1 favorite]

May his vision be a blessing.
posted by Kinbote at 6:14 PM on January 21, 2011 [1 favorite]

posted by ryanshepard at 6:27 PM on January 21, 2011

posted by nickyskye at 7:17 PM on January 21, 2011

Thanks, Zarq. The man was a treasure.
posted by Phlogiston at 7:18 PM on January 21, 2011

Milton Rogovin introduced my parents to each other.

My brothers, parents, and I visited him and his wife, Anne, in their home back when it was self-evident that a photographer's home would smell like a darkroom. They were kind and wonderful people that, in that afternoon, made a tremendous impression as deeply caring about their community and the less fortunate.

posted by stet at 9:35 PM on January 21, 2011 [1 favorite]

thanks for the post. I enjoyed reading about him and looking at the photos.
posted by phogirl at 4:12 AM on January 22, 2011

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