Reflections on Ground Zero : BBC Documentary
Compare with the way another photographer – a policeman John Bott whose health was seriously damaged by the photography work he did. Unlike Meyerowitz he did not profit from the photos he took.
Joel Meyerowitz (born March 6, 1938) is a street photographer and portrait and landscape photographer.
He began photographing in color in 1962 and was an early advocate of the use of color during a time when there was significant resistance to the idea of color photography as serious art. In the early 1970s he taught the first color course at the Cooper Union in New York City where many of today’s renowned color photographers studied with him.
In 1962, inspired by seeing Robert Frank at work, Meyerowitz quit his job as an art director at an advertising agency and started photographing streets of New York City with a 35 mm camera and black-and-white film. Garry Winogrand, Tony Ray-Jones, Lee Friedlander, Tod Papageorge and Diane Arbus were photographing there at the same time. Meyerowitz was inspired Henri Cartier-Bresson, Robert Frank and Eugène Atget.
After alternating between black-and-white and color, Meyerowitz “permanently adopted color” in 1972, well before John Szarkowski’s promotion in 1976 of color photography in an exhibition of work by the then little-knownWilliam Eggleston. Meyerowitz also switched at this time to large format, often using an 8×10 camera to produce photographs of places and people.
Meyerowitz appears extensively in the 2006 BBC Four documentary series The Genius of Photography and in the 2013 documentary film Finding Vivian Maier.
He is the author of 16 books including:
Cape Light, considered a classic work of color photography.