Wednesday, January 19, 2011

"Storefront Churches — Buffalo"

Above, images from Milton Rogovin's "first social documentary series," "photographed on the East Side and completed in 1961," to accompany the news that "the Buffalo social documentary photographer who became internationally renowned for revealing the unsung stories and inherent dignity of the poor, disinherited and working class, died Tuesday morning" — Renowned for illuminating human condition, photographer dies at 101.

"The rich have their photographers; I photograph the forgotten ones," said this man who "turned to photography not long after being hauled before the House Un-American Activities Committee in October 1957 for leftist political activity." Mr. Rogovin was "a member of the Buffalo chapter of the Communist Party," as the article states: "I was active in radical movements at that time, especially in the African-American community," he confessed.

I cast no stones, having known Mr. Rogovin and his lovely wife Anne as regular shoppers at the Lexington Co-operative Market when I was a clerk there in the late '80s and early '90s. Wonderful people. Out of power, commies take pictures of churches; in power, they send parishioners to gulags.

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Omnes Sancti et Sanctæ Coreæ, orate pro nobis.