France - So that all the world might have a photographic record of the invasion, these men, Signal Corps combat photographers, risk their lives on the front – their only weapons, a camera and a lot of nerve. Left to right: Pvt. Louis Weintraub, Brooklyn, N.Y.; Pfc. Francis P. Lee, New York City; Lt. George A. Stack, Euclid, Ohio; T/Sgt. Val C. Pope, Compton, Calif.; and Pfc. Walter Rosenblum, Brooklyn, N.Y. June 27, 1944.
«In my philosophy, the meaning of life derives from the people one has known and loved who have made life inexhaustible in its richness. I have met my share of evil people and know what they are capable of. I was at the liberation of the camp at Dachau. But I have always held that evil is not inherent in human beings. I still believe that given a caring society, only the best in people will flourish. This is the spirit that moved me to photograph.»
Walter Rosenblum *
|They Fight with Cameras is the annotation-title of the picture taken the 27th of June 1944 (approximately 3 weeks after the invasion of Normandy) where Walter Rosenblum and his unit members are portrayed. This is where the volume and the itinerant exhibition take their name. Their curator, Manuela Fugenzi, has dedicated them to Walter Rosenblum, extraordinary humanist photographer and member of the Photo League.
The occasion of the sixtieth anniversary of the invasion of Normandy has brought the attention back to the work of a photographer that, as others, took part in the invasion documenting it with pictures that unfortunately were all lost because of the death of the couriers that were supposed to deliver them to the studio in England and, once developed on paper, to give them to the Army Pictorial Service for military censorship approval.
«It has been a very interesting exercise of recovery of the memory – tells the curator of the volume, Manuela Fugenzi – that allowed also to rediscover some footage filmed by Walter Rosenblum and unreleased pictures that are shown in the exhibition together with other material.
||Among them we can find letters and war reports on the Omaha Beach invasion and on the liberation of Hammelburg detention camps. Also, among the letters, a correspondence with the critic Elizabeth McCausland threw a different light on the photographic scene in New York at the time».
The exhibition linked to the volume was shown last year in December at spazio 10b photography in Rome and previously in Vienna. After a hoped for Parisian stop-over, the exhibition will be itinerant in the USA starting from the middle of this year.
Special thanks to the logistic support of ISFCI in Rome, to Dario Coletti for collecting the statements and Jacopo Tofani for the filming.
[ Sandro Iovine ]--------------------------------------------
(*) - Manuela Fugenzi (curated by), They fight with cameras, Postcart, Roma, 2014; pag. 5.
title They fight with cameras, Walter Rosenblum in World War II from D-Day to Dachau
author curated by Manuela Fugenzi, with a text by Daniel Allentuck
publication year 2014
publishing house Postcart Roma
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