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Photographs by W. Eugene Smith Essay by Jim Hughes
My station in life is to capture the action of life, the life of the world, its humor, its tragedies, in other words, life as it is. A true picture, unposed and real. --W. Eugene Smith
W. Eugene Smith is the master of the photographic essay; he created essays which include some of the most dramatic and affecting single images of the twentieth century. Fiercely energetic, he made countless photographs memorable for their formal brilliance and for their compassion. This volume of Aperture's Masters of Photography presents more than seventy of Smith's greatest photographs, selected from work created over the course of forty-five years.
Smith's interests were broad; his work spanned subject matter from the process of birth to the horrors of death in action. Included here are photographs from Smith's most celebrated photo-essays, including Country Doctor, Spanish Village, Pittsburgh, and Minamata, as well as examples of his World War II work and selections from the later, more introspective work made in his loft in New York City.
In his introductory essay, Jim Hughes, Smith's biographer, provides an overview of Smith's life, and insight into his work.