Yesterday I spent hours looking at the facsimile of The Big Book by W. Eugene Smith. I could relate to the darkness he found in the world and his devotion to its depiction. I could also relate to John Berger’s words about Smith’s mother: “How did the moral drama, which is so integral a part of his photography, first begin for him? Unquestionably, profoundly, and until the end, it began with his mother.”* A detailed review of Smith’s Big Book can be found here.
*Berger, John. Pieta: W. Eugene Smith, The Big Book, Volume 3 Essays and Texts. Austin, University of Texas Press; Center for Creative Photography, University of Arizona. 2013.