Saturday, February 26, 2011

EAOC's Collective Blogging Event: James Van Der Zee

Thank you to all our readers, supporters and members who participated in EAOC's collective blogging event in honor of Black History Month.
In bringing this event to a close.  EAOC Member Robert Trujillo remembers James Van Der Zee.  

"I don’ t remember exactly which library I was in the first time I came across his work. But I do remember wanting to take the “ Harlem book of dead” home. It was a series of photographs about people who had passed away. He captured time, space, and energy so well that I copied many of the photos and pasted them into my sketchbook, which Istill have somewhere. His body of work is incredible. While living in New York I had a chance to see some more of his work at The Studio Museum in Harlem. Wow, I was blown away again. The sepia tones and contrast in his pieces are of great interest to me. I conjure up a bit of him in my work as a great inspiration."

"James Van Der Zee is a well known African American photographer who’ s subjects included the Dead as I mentioned, The Harlem Renaissance, Jazz, religion, and everyday people; black people. He was born in 1886 and lived to be nearly 100 years old. His work in New York is well known, as is his depiction of a people, in that  time."

This is a quick sketch I did of him. One day I’ ll find that “ Book of the dead” again!
-Robert Trujillo


Indigofera Beauty Expert said...

Great Tribute and inspiration. I actually have that photo of the Harlem couple on a postcard.

Lisa Abdul-Quddus said...

Thanks for sharing Robert!

Cassandra Bromfield's Blogs said...

Love Van Der Zee also

Dee said...

thanks for that history great info!

M2BM said...

i have a copy of the photo on a postcard and have been carrying it for years. it is so inspiring and beautiful. a flickr contact of mine researches and showcases vintage black americana. thanks for highlighting this important american historian.

Robert Trujillo/Tres said...

Thanks everybody for commenting! We should do this regularly, more POC inventors. entrepreneurs who arent out to become capitalist bourgousie, creative folks! Love and light!


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