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Last month we wrote about the Living American Masters Photography Project (LAMPP), which strives to document the photographers shaping our world — preserving their own stories, not just those told by their photos. Under the LAMPP umbrella, founder Paul Waldman has made portraits of many living (and now past) masters, including Gordon Parks, Sally Mann, and Mary Ellen Mark. When we talked to Paul before, he was looking for a home for the extensive LAMPP content. We’re happy to announce he’s found one, at least online, with a new website.
On top of the collection of portraits created for the project, Paul and other interviewers have recorded lengthy conversations with many photographers, which LAMPP is sharing snippets of each month on RESOLVE. Our last post included Marty Lederhandler telling his infamous “Pigeon Story” about trying to get unexercised carrier pigeons to take his images of WWII’s D-Day back to the AP. (It’s quite funny and definitely worth the listen if you missed it last time.)
Ron Haviv – Outsmarting Arkan
This month we have a story from Ron Haviv about an encounter with the Serbian paramilitary leader Arkan (at right) while he was covering the Bosnian War during the 1990s. With a little smoke and mirrors, Ron saved his revealing images from confiscation and helped share the horrors of ethnic cleansing he saw with the world. Much of the work is collected in his book, Blood and Honey.
From Paul: I met Ron Haviv back in March of 2005. Both of us were keynote speakers at the NPPA’s Northern Short Course. I’d sat in on Ron’s presentation and my good friend David Handschuh introduced us early on. Ron’s work had interested me for some time. Interviewing him for LAMPP would be a rare opportunity to speak candidly with a conflict photographer whose work had a direct impact on national politics, including outing a known Baltic warlord named Arkan. We recorded this segment in my hotel room at the conference.
When I met Ron again at Photo Plus Expo East; we were each being photographed for Tim Mantoani’s Polaroid Project. I took that opportunity to do portraits of both Ron and Lauren Greenfield. Unfortunately, I was unable to sit and speak with Lauren, an opportunity I’d hoped for for quite some time.