Senator Barry Goldwater, Photographer
Just ran across this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barry_g...er#Photography
According to the article, the Senator had three books published, one with a forward by Ansel Adams.
Anyone seen his work or remember it?
There was a magazine cover several years ago that feature the Senator and his work. Seem to recall seeing a show of his work as well, back in the late 70's and it was quite good.
IIRC he was a member of PPA and quite active for some time. Glad to see people are still discovering his work.
Thanks for reminding me about Goldwater -- I've recently been wracking my memory trying to think of a really good photographer who is also a political conservative. The only ones I've been able to think of are essentially exercising mannered tropes, and Goldwater is certainly the arch-example of all examples. His 1950's and 1960's photos look like they should have been made a half-century earlier.
Last edited by bjorke; 02-01-2007 at 10:42 PM. Click to view previous post history.
The original Barry Goldwater prints I've seen certainly wouldn't compete with Ansel Adams, but weren't all that bad. Ex-senator Howard Baker was also a photographer.
While I never agreed with his politics, besides photography, Goldwater and I shared another interest - ham radio. He was very highly regarded by amateur radio operators - even those opposed to him fantasized about a full-size yagi antenna on top of the White House. Goldwater was an active ham throughout his life and during the Viet Nam War (a time well before internets, global telephoning etc.) was very active "running phone patches" so that troops could contact their families via a ham radio/telephone interconnect.
As to his photography, I understand he did a number of aerial surveys of the Grand Canyon in the 1950's. This was when much of it was still unexplored. And I believe Goldwater is credited with "discovering" at least one major rock formation in what was an inaccessible part by shooting the same area at different times of the day to "follow the sun".
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[quote=copake_ham;426127]besides photography, Goldwater and I shared another interest - ham radio. quote]
FWIW, the late King Hussein of Jordon was also an international ham operator.
Yes, but if you read his 'The Conscience of a Conservative' you soon see that he's a long way from the current cartoon conservative, i.e. he's not a brain-dead redneck born-again Christian warmonger.
Originally Posted by bjorke
I'm not saying the cartoon variety is the only sort of conservative there is, because Goldwater himself illustrates perfectly that this is not so. I'm just suggesting that the cartoon variety has been on the ascendant lately.
Surely there must have been a few good Nazi photographers: not Leni, please, because I really believe that she was naive rather than a committed Nazi (and indeed few Nazis apart from Hitler himself appear to have been able to stand her -- an unusually persuasive illustration of the Fuehrerprinzip, perhaps). I do recall seeing other clichéd but still arresting Nazi pictures, though. And of course on the other side of the fence there were quite a few good Communist photographers such as Aleksandr Rodchenko.
And what about Argentina? The percentage of good photographers from the Argentine has been disproportionately high, but I know little about their political sympathies.
I liked what I have seen of Goldwater's photos.
Technological society has succeeded in multiplying the opportunities for pleasure, but it has great difficulty in generating joy. Pope Paul VI
So, I think the "greats" were true to their visions, once their visions no longer sucked. Ralph Barker 12/2004
Here is the Barry Goldwater Photo website:
A conservative from the 60's and 70's has little in common with a neocon and the circus going on today. Goldwater would likely have very serious issues with the current administration (but then again who wouldn't, doesn't, unless you have stock in Exxon)
In perusing his photos it is pretty clear that he photographed for the love of it, and I think that Barry Goldwater, Photographer, can stand alone and apart from Barry Goldwater, Politician.
Kudos to Mr.Goldwater. RIP
That's just, like, my opinion, man...
Thanks Roger, good thoughts. I'm in the middle of writing a short essay on war photography and some of the paradoxes outlined in Sontag's Regarding the Pain of Others (caution: ugly images) and evaluating it in the light of the sorts of cognitive-evolutionary analysis done by researchers such as Marc Hauser at Harvard.
Originally Posted by Roger Hicks
Basically, I think that Sontag over-interprets the failures and frustrations of war photography in its apparent inability to halt war altogether. Researchers like Hauser et al, while not studying photography directly, reveal the crucial connection for human morality (which functions at a low level with strong universality, regardless of culture) and the importance of seeing people. Sight, and by extension photography, is (to my delight) a strong moralizing, humanizing force - far stronger than words.
Conservative/liberal left/right politics aside, I personally cannot think of many (any?) visual artists of any merit who are pro-war, even in the presence of great direct threat (Goya and Picasso come to mind as artists who were clearly threatened but whose images did not advocate violence against their self-declared enemies).