If you're like most of us American working stiffs, you're halfway through a short work week and looking forward to a long weekend spending some well-deserved leisure time outdoors with friends and family. Today's new vintage photo editions by legendary FSA photographers Arthur Siegel and Marjory Collins embrace the spirit of these summer days.
On the surface, Arthur Siegel seems to capture the archetypal camp experience—the simple thrill of dangling feet at the end of a dock, sharing stories with friends. Once we dove a little deeper, we found ourselves backstroking in lush detail. The children in this shot weren't crafting lanyards and sand candles. Instead, think Glee with mosquitoes. Established in 1927, the National High School Orchestra Camp was instituted in Interlochen, Michigan as a prestigious destination for music education. Thousands of local residents converged upon the camp every summer to observe high school students play as a professional orchestra under the stars. And guess what? The camp still thrives today.
Now, thanks to Siegel and his surrealist leanings, we get to engage in a little harmless voyeurism. Watch campers from the summer of '42 perform in a spontaneous summertime performance of another kind. The photographer plays with us by creating a certain tension: the uniformed girls draw us in while the canopy of branches and the dock that angles into the center of the frame put us firmly at a distance.
Fourth of July Sunday School Picnic, Patuxent River, Maryland by Marjory Collins
8"x8" ($24) | 11"x11" ($60) | 16"x16" ($240) | 20"x20" ($600)
Marjory Collins offers a more formal approach in her image of Sunday school attendees enjoying the timeless tradition of an Independence Day picnic. Pass the biscuits, please! Ladies in fine dresses relax on their makeshift bench. Children wade in shallow water. Men survey the scene (and guide our own eyes to do the same). A weeping willow stands in as picture frame. It all feels a bit like an Impressionist painting come to life. The picture fairly radiates contentment and togetherness. It may be a vintage photograph, but that feeling of communal celebration is something we yearn for even today. Can we get an "amen" to that?
Have a fabulous 4th, friends!
With art for everyone,
Jen + Team 20x200