Wednesday, October 08, 2014

Baker: street

Thanks to the BBC website for introducing me to the work of the late Shirley Baker, who chronicled a period of rapid social change in Manchester and Salford in the 1960s and 1970s. You can browse a collection of her photos on the Mary Evans Picture Library website. It's street photography at its best - natural, opportunistic, beautifully composed, valuable documentary evidence of places, people and a past that might otherwise have gone unrecorded.

The site can also be credited with bringing to wider attention the work of fellow photographer Edwin Smith, whose sensitive use of light renders otherwise mundane scenes extraordinary. The article was prompted by the fact that an exhibition of his work is currently taking place at RIBA - I might try to pay a visit when I'm down in London at the end of the month.

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