More on Weegee's world of crime
© International Center of Photography)
I found an exhibition catalogue Tuesday evening called Weegee's New York that displays the Cop Killer photo on its cover but gives a date of 1939 rather than 1941. (I suppose there are at least three ways to date a documentary photo: by the date of the event, by the date of the negative, and by the date of the print.) The catalogue also includes a photograph of what appears to be the same woman shown in the stripper photo from my "Crime pictures at an exhibition" post, but it gives no date, a disappointing omission for an exhibition catalogue.
The book does, however, begin with an epigraph from Walter Benjamin that reads, in part: "[I]s not every spot of our cities the scene of a crime? every passerby a perpetrator? Does not the photographer — descendant of augurers and haruspices — uncover guilt in his pictures?"
The introduction also cites the humor of Weegee's captions, those "extravagant, callously written witticisms à la Raymond Chandler."
© Peter Rozovsky 2008