Friday, November 14, 2014

Sebastião Salgado, Workers

Brazilian photographer Sebastião Salgado's first big splash on the world scene was the photographs he titled Workers, documenting the conditions of work in the harsher places of the world. Published as a book in 1993, the photographs were shot around the world in the 80s and early 90s. The most famous are from the Serra Pelada gold mine in Brazil (above and below).

And below, some images of the men who went to Kuwait in 1991 to put out oil field fires. To me Salgado is one of the great artists of our age.


G. Verloren said...

I'd have preferred the images be in color - the black and white aesthetic distances us from the reality of the images, with an emphasis on form rather than on substance. The images feel far more concerned with being artistic and exhibiting en vogue techniques, than with actually adressing the subjects of the images in a way that the viewer can relate to our internalize. Given the choice of subject and the nature of what is being photographed, it feels entirely inappropriate.

pootrsox said...

I find the images powerful and frightening-- like 15th century woodcuts of Dante's Inferno or a Bosch horror image.

I believe that art is of equal value to "addressing the subject of the images" in a realistic way.

Conveying the universality of the horror is a legitimate purpose of this art.