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. 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.
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