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Thread: Margaret Bourke-White

  1. #1
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Margaret Bourke-White

    A print by Margaret Bourke-White was just on Antique Road Show, a second time.

    Now valued at 6 to 9K.

    The owner has a dozen of her prints, in a basement or attic...not matted, framed or glass. Stacked.

    Intialially I liked the very heavy dimpled paper they are printed on. And of course the subject and execution. First the appraiser identified the paper as characteristic.

    I had to look her up. Wonderful art with meaning. Lot's at the links below.

    Margaret Bourke-White

    I never heard of her, there is plenty I don't know.

    Also featured here The lost women: forgotten female photographers brought to light – in pictures

    and places close to the Weston print I commented on, fine art can mean something more
    Vive la révolution!

  2. #2

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    Re: Margaret Bourke-White

    When I had my studio in Darien, CT the newspaper sent me to her home to photograph her shortly before she died.

    Nice lady!

  3. #3
    jp's Avatar
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    Re: Margaret Bourke-White

    You've probably seen this photo of her!

  4. #4

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    Re: Margaret Bourke-White

    She was the first successful industrial photographer, and can be said to have invented the specialty. See her early pictures from Cleveland and in 'Fortune' magazine.
    (jp, I had a poster of that photograph over my desk at Kodak for many years.)
    Of course she went on to bigger and better things... truly one of the all-time greats.

  5. #5

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    Re: Margaret Bourke-White

    This 12" Goerz Dagor was owned/used by Margaret Bourke-White. Some of her photography stuff appeared on eBay years ago. Made the purchase not knowing until afterwards when the seller told me where this lens came from and it's previous owner. Origins and seller of this Dagor is documented via email correspondences.

    Have tested and used this particular Dagor it is a good one.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Email from seller:

    "My friend was married to a relative of Erskine Caldwell and his great uncle who lived with them (he passed away last year at age 92) I went to a garage sale which is how I met that family. The old man (dont know his name) was the great uncle of Erskine caldwell. I met the old man at the garage sale and he let me in the house where I purchased a very old aumbry cupboard dating from around 15th century (see image). He told me it belonged to Margret White who was a photo journalist who was well known for her work in russia and during the war who was also from NY area.

    The old man showed me books and photos of her work of old military images from russia and the german war etc. The cupboard he said was brought back from europe by Margaret and she loved it so much it traveled with her where ever she went ( not sure why a cupboard) she got sick and she left items with this old man who was so full of information. I bought the cupboard for $100 not knowing its true value of over $100,000) We cleaned it out and inside were many books autographed to Margaret from Sam Haskins, warhol, marc chagal and many othes, (some we sold in ebay)

    the cameras the man said belonged to Maraget who used them overseas and towards her later years before her death there are 7 more cameras some with MBW etched on them (they look to be older leicas from 1920 to 1937 (which we sold on ebay last week) everything in the camera bag belonged to Margaret the old man said and was used in her overseas photos. BUT he said I cant buy them just the cupboard but I left my number in case he wanted to sell the books or other art etc.

    A year later when I found out what the cupboard was worth I wanted to go tell the old man and give him some more money but he had passed away months earlier, that is when I acquired the cameras, they are mine but I wanted to let her know if they sell ill give her half the money they sold for but I decided to give it all to her and ill keep some of the cameras."

    -The other lens that was owned/used by Morley Baer is a 210mm Kowa Graphic in a Copal# 1 shutter, this appeared to be his moderate wide for 8x10. Other lenses that were for sale at the time were Dagors & APO Artars and a 121mm Super Angulon, did not purchase any
    of these as they would have been duplicates.


    Bernice

  6. #6

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    Re: Margaret Bourke-White

    Cool story!

  7. #7

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    Re: Margaret Bourke-White

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Sampson View Post
    She was the first successful industrial photographer, and can be said to have invented the specialty. See her early pictures from Cleveland and in 'Fortune' magazine.
    (jp, I had a poster of that photograph over my desk at Kodak for many years.)
    Of course she went on to bigger and better things... truly one of the all-time greats.
    She, with her Rolleiflex, took most of the display shots on Kodak Brownie packaging for the 127, 120 and 620 cameras during the 50s and early 60s.

    She also took that Life cover shot of the building of the Golden Gate Bridge.

  8. #8
    Robert Bowring
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    Re: Margaret Bourke-White

    One of her photographs was the cover on the first Life magazine.

  9. #9

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    Re: Margaret Bourke-White

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Bowring View Post
    One of her photographs was the cover on the first Life magazine.
    The Fort Peck dam:

    https://timedotcom.files.wordpress.c...eck-dam-34.jpg

    She also photographed Gandhi for Time (if you've seen the movie "Gandhi", Candice Bergen plays the part of MBW).

  10. #10

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    Re: Margaret Bourke-White

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Salomon View Post

    She also took that Life cover shot of the building of the Golden Gate Bridge.
    Hi Bob,

    She was an amazingly talented photographer. The May 31, 1937 cover photo of the Golden Gate Bridge is credited to Standard Oil Company. Interesting. I wonder if a photo from her later aerial photography project of bridges made the cover.

    When I think of bridge building across San Francisco Bay, her fellow staffer Peter Stackpole comes to mind. He photographed construction of the first two bridges, work that came to Luce's attention and ultimate hiring in the original group of four Life staff photographers. Peter had great respect for Bourke-White's work.

    A bit off topic, I met Peter in Darien when he was still with Life, and later lived three blocks from him after he retired to his boyhood home here in Oakland. I got to know him well, and we went through the 1991 Oakland fire together; I was luckier that Peter, he lost most of a life's work, and a home turned to ash.

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