Ruth Orkin Women

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Edited by: Nadine Barth, Katharina Mouratidi Contributions: Nadine Barth English 2023, 144 Pages, 111 Ills. Hardcover 276mm x 272mm
ISBN: 978-3-7757-5685-3

Her American Girl in Italy–the street scene with the whistling Italians–is an icon. Now sensational negatives and slides have surfaced from the archive that reveal a little-known side of Ruth Orkin: that of the sensitive, interested, witty chronicler of the women’s world of the 1940s and 1950s. Orkin thought up editorials like the tongue-in-cheek reportage Who works harder? comparing the lives of a career woman and a housewife. She documented the hustle and bustle in beauty salons and at cocktail parties, at dog shows and on Hollywood film sets. We meet Lauren Bacall, Jane Russell, Joan Taylor or Doris Day, but also waitresses, stewardesses and female soldiers, as wall as groups of female friends. What emerges is the image of women on the move, women who are beginning to cast off the conventions imposed on them, going their own way: self-confident, stylish, smart.

American photographer, photojournalist, and filmmaker RUTH ORKIN (1921–1985) grew up in Hollywood as the daughter of a silent film actress. She went on to be one of the first women to study photojournalism at Los Angeles City College. In 1943 Orkin moved to New York City, working as a freelance photojournalist. Her photographs appeared in The New York Times, LIFE, Look, Ladies’ Home Journal, and other publications. On the occasion of what would have been her 100th birthday, exhibitions were held across Europe and North America. In 2021, Hatje Cantz published A Photo Spirit dedicated to her pioneering work.
EXHIBITIONS
f3 – freiraum für fotografie , Berlin
December 8, 2023–February 18, 2024
Gallery of Fine Arts, Ostrava
March 5–May 12, 2024