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Marion Post Wolcott

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Marion Post Wolcott, America, (June 7, 1910–November 24, 1990)
Oldest child of migrant packing-house workers preparing supper. Her parents work during the day and sometimes until 2 a.m. The children are left alone. New Homestead, Florida, 1939
Gelatin silver print on paper
8 3/4 x 11 5/8 in. (22.2 x 29.5 cm)

Object Type: Photography
Technique: Gelatin silver Process
Credit Line: Gift of Michael Blasgen, in honor of Sharon Walther Blasgen '64
Accession Number: 2020.6.2

Wolcott gives us a rare glimpse inside the home of a migrant worker. She captures everything from the makeshift walls of cardboard to the dirt strewn with straw. The barefoot girl works over a stove, earnestly stirring the family’s dinner. Wolcott often talked with her subjects in order to ease their nerves about being photographed. Perhaps the girl is reacting to something Wolcott said; we can’t see her eyes, but her mouth indicates she is smiling. Despite her obvious hardships, the girl is able to find some cheer in her day-to-day life. Wolcott sought to capture the humanity of her subjects, not just the worn-down hopelessness that the public might have expected.

Kaela Nurmi, Scripps 2015

In pencil, verso:

Title and year of creation, top, center (year is written as: 1939 or 1940)
"Archivally processed" center
"50907-D" center
Artist's name, lower right.

silver gelatin print

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