A Mystery of the West is Solved
By Kirk Johnson, The New York Times
DENVER—The gifted young idealist who slips the bonds of civilization and prevails against the wild, or fails in the trying, is a recurring theme of the American West—not to mention Hollywood.
Everett Ruess in many ways defined the template. A poet, painter and confidant to a leathery set of Western artists in the 1930s, including Dorothea Lange and Ansel Adams, the 20-year-old Mr. Ruess rode off into the desert of the Southwest in 1934 with two burros and a notebook full of dreams, never to be seen again. Over the next 75 years, the West became tamer, but Mr. Ruess and his legend did not, and the lingering mystery of his disappearance only added to the romantic aura of the time and fueled the periodic search for evidence of his fate.
Now the circle has been closed...
READ ON at nytimes.com
Storm Chaser, Revised
The revised and expanded edition of Jim Reed's book, Storm Chaser: A Photographer's Journey (Harry N. Abrams) hits bookstores today. It includes 16 new pages, for a total of 194 color photos.
You can preview the new paperback at the website, which features more than 40 photos from the book, excerpts, testimonials, a video of storm chasing, media interviews, purchase information, and more.
The new cover is a shot of Jim running up to a tornado while testing a pre-production model of Nikon's D700.
Polaroid Art Has Price But No Place
Stuck in limbo, for now, is Polaroid's collection of photos taken by some of the biggest names in 20th-century art.
By Jennifer Bjorhus, The Star Tribune
Late one night last November, Doug Kelley sat in his family room in Bloomington, sifting through a stack of the day's legal work. Kelley is the court-appointed receiver in the Tom Petters case, a surrogate CEO running what's left of the jailed businessman's companies and squeezing out cash for the investors Petters allegedly bilked of $3.5 billion.
In the stack of legal papers was a bid for the assets of Polaroid, which Petters had bought four years earlier for $426 million and moved to Minnetonka. A small line item in the bid caught his eye: The Polaroid Art collection. $10 million...
READ ON at startribune.com
New Works by Photography's Old Masters
By Randy Kennedy, The New York Times
When the three weathered cardboard boxes—known collectively, and cinematically, as the Mexican suitcase—arrived at the International Center of Photography more than a year ago, one of the first things a conservator did was bend down and sniff the film coiled inside, fearful of a telltale acrid odor, a sign of nitrate decay.
But the rolls turned out to be in remarkably good shape despite being almost untouched for 70 years. And so began a painstaking process of unfurling, scanning and trying to make sense of some 4,300 negatives taken by Robert Capa, Gerda Taro and David Seymour during the Spanish Civil War, groundbreaking work that was long thought to be lost but resurfaced several years ago in Mexico City.
What the center’s scholars have found among the 126 rolls over the last several months are a number of previously unknown shots by Capa, one of the founders of the Magnum photo agency and a pioneering war photographer, and by Taro, his professional partner and companion, who died in 1937 when she was struck by a tank...
READ ON at nytimes.com
(Thanks to Vance Cowan, Jim Reed, Mike Budd, and David Goldfarb)