Photographers I Admire – Lutz Dille

From The Compassionate Eye of Lutz Dille by Vincenzo Pietropaolo:

The street is like a stage of everyday life, the public sphere of much of our existence, especially in larger cities where the critical mass of the urban environment easily provides artists with an array of rich visual materials and activities. It is no wonder then that the genre of documentary street photography has evolved into one of the most defining elements of the medium. The streets of New York, Paris and London inspired some of the most iconic photographs created by the medium’s foremost practitioners.

Canadian cities were no less kind to photographers, if less famous than their European or American counterparts. In the 1950s and 1960s, Toronto and Montreal, in particular, experienced a surge of documentary photographic activity on their streets. It was the golden age of street photography, when Sam Tata, John Max, Michel Lambeth, Michael Semak and John Reeves—to name a few—walked the streets, cameras in hand, and incessantly observed and recorded the grandeur of staged spectacle like parades and celebrations, or the subtleties of quotidian life en passant. In the post-war period the country was on a cultural and economic upswing, and documentary photographers helped to solidify a new sense of identity for Canadians. Mass circulation magazines like Star Weekly and the weekend inserts in large daily newspapers regularly published photo stories; the first galleries dedicated exclusively to photography began to be established; and photographic books began to appear.

It was into this ambience of positivism that a young German photographer, Lutz Dille, stepped off the train in Hamilton in 1951.

 

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Images by Lutz Dille

 

 

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