Photography as Art (Day 4 - Bernice Abbott)

For Day #221 of the 365 Days of Art, I am featuring Bernice Abbott's NYC Financial District rooftops (1938).

I chose the rooftops image because NYC was on my mind as last week after my mother and I watched HBO's documentary, Wizard of Lies, about Bernie Madoff. 

My mother decided not to finish watching it and I made myself finish it
It was a little boring, but glad I finished it. 
Funny how the movie had all this star power (Di Nero, Azaria, etc.) but it was only so-so (Pfeiffer's Bostonian accent was inconsistent too..)
And so sad about Madoff's sons - made us wonder if it was "really" fate or if someone had revenge...

Anyhow, back to our featured woman photographer, Bernice Abbott. 
Here is a street shot of hers to give you another take on her work. 
We need photos of trees and portraits, but some raw street photos grab the culture by the jugular and whisper of many things. Can you see how Maier (here) had similarities with Abbott?
And some more of Abbott's photos:

I think photographers like this are a gift to the world. 

A little bit about Bernice Abbott (from here).

"Initially, Abbott had no interest in photography and had no intention of becoming anything but a good darkroom assistant.
She was efficient and diligent, and soon found herself immensely enjoying the process. On her own, she began to work long hours to perfect her techniques. Man Ray did not teach me photographic techniques. One day he did, however, suggest that I ought to take some myself; he showed me how the camera worked and I soon began taking some on my lunch break. I would ask friends to come by and I’d take pictures of them. The first I took came out well, which surprised me. I had no idea of becoming a photographer, but the pictures kept coming out and most of them were good. Some were very good and I decided perhaps I could charge something for my work.

Her artistic instinct with photographic imaging was natural. Abbott’s clientele grew quickly. She began to pay Man Ray for the supplies she used, and soon paid him more than she was making! This began to cause problems between the two friends. Eventually, Abbott resigned. He changed my whole life; he was the only person I ever worked for and I was extremely grateful to have a job, to have the opportunity to learn. Within the next year she opened her own portrait studio, which was also her home at 44 rue de Bac. Her reputation grew quickly. Clients became friends and Abbott soon had just as much or more business than Man Ray. On June 8, 1926, Abbott had her first solo exhibition at the Jan Slivinsky Gallery entitled, Portraits Photographiques. The show received rave reviews. Abbott remained in Paris for almost ten years and during this period she was introduced to Eugene Atget’s photography."

Have a good day.