U.S. Navy Official U.S. Navy Photographs From WWII, and "OUR Gallant NAVY"
Medium Vintage Gelatin Silver Prints
Photo Date 1942 Print Date 1942
Dimensions 8 x 10 in. (203 x 254 mm)
Photo Country United States (USA)
Photographer Country United States (USA)
Contact Charles Schwartz
About This Image
18 vintage gelatin silver prints made under Edward Steichen's direction during WWII. Prints stamped on verso with credit/copyright info and short descriptions (in classic, wartime prose). Scenes include natives in the South Pacific watch as the Navy assembles a plane among the palm trees; aircraft carriers await orders at sunset; a signal man instructs others in semaphore; and a young, handsome crewman reads a letter from home. All read "OFFICIAL U.S. NAVY PHOTOGRAPH." Also included is a 30-page photographic souvenir book entitled "Our Gallant Navy."
Steichen was Director of the Naval Photographic Institute during WWII and he hand-picked a team of important photographers to document naval operations. Traces of the fashion photographer, ad man, fine artist, and patriot show up in the photographs made by Steichen and his photographic team. Peter Galassi, curator of photography at the Museum of Modern Art, says that in choosing what to photograph, Steichen “was selecting for really good advertisements.” None of the WWII naval photographers were given credit by name, and so this group of prints bear general “US Navy” credit stamps on the verso.
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