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Monday, 7 February 2011

Industrial Archeology: On the River (Interlude)


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Boats lit up for a Venetian night party at the Detroit yacht club, whose members represent the wealthier class of manufacturers and their friends: photo by Arthur Siegel, Summer 1940 (Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information Collection, Library of Congress)

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Detroit, Michigan: Commodore and girls drinking at a Venetian night party at the Detroit yacht club, whose members represent the wealthier class of manufacturers and their friends: photo by Arthur Siegel, Summer 1940 (Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information Collection, Library of Congress)

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Couples kissing in a boat at a Venetian night party at the Detroit yacht club, whose members represent the wealthier class of manufacturers and their friends: photo by Arthur Siegel, Summer 1940 (Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information Collection, Library of Congress)

http://lcweb2.loc.gov/service/pnp/fsa/8d25000/8d25200/8d25281r.jpg

Scene at a Venetian night party at the Detroit yacht club, whose members represent the wealthier class of manufacturers and their friends: photo by Arthur Siegel, Summer 1940 (Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information Collection, Library of Congress)

http://lcweb2.loc.gov/service/pnp/fsa/8d25000/8d25200/8d25291r.jpg

Scene at a Venetian night party at the Detroit yacht club, whose members represent the wealthier class of manufacturers and their friends: photo by Arthur Siegel, Summer 1940 (Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information Collection, Library of Congress)

http://lcweb2.loc.gov/service/pnp/fsa/8d25000/8d25200/8d25293r.jpg

Scene at a Venetian night party at the Detroit yacht club, whose members represent the wealthier class of manufacturers and their friends: photo by Arthur Siegel, Summer 1940 (Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information Collection, Library of Congress)

http://lcweb2.loc.gov/service/pnp/fsa/8d25000/8d25300/8d25301r.jpg

Scene at a Venetian night party at the Detroit yacht club, whose members represent the wealthier class of manufacturers and their friends: photo by Arthur Siegel, Summer 1940 (Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information Collection, Library of Congress)

http://lcweb2.loc.gov/service/pnp/fsa/8d25000/8d25300/8d25306r.jpg

Scene at a Venetian night party at the Detroit yacht club, whose members represent the wealthier class of manufacturers and their friends: photo by Arthur Siegel, Summer 1940 (Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information Collection, Library of Congress)

http://lcweb2.loc.gov/service/pnp/fsa/8d25000/8d25200/8d25295r.jpg

A Venetian night party at the Detroit yacht club, whose members represent the wealthier class of manufacturers and their friends: photo by Arthur Siegel, Summer 1940 (Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information Collection, Library of Congress)

2 comments:

curtisroberts said...

The sequence of Arthur Siegel phtographs, along with the repeated (more like re-intoned) captions, creates an unearthly portentous mood setting the stage for Detroit's long hard fall. Things can, of course, always be imagined from the eye of the beholder. What did the Venetian Night attendees think of Arthur Siegel's presence? Did they ever see these photos?

TC said...

Yes, it's interesting to imagine Arthur slipping in and out of these curious Motor City photo-ops, Curtis. We recall in wonderment the festive Von Stroheim New Years shot, with the actor's somewhat bilious expression inadequately concealing, what -- mild distaste?

As for these boat people at the Venetian night party, something tells me they were several sails downriver of being able to notice much of anything at all... one senses that perhaps the girl who jumped (fell? was pushed?) into the Detroit River might not have been having quite as much fun as was meant.

The strange thing is, the implicit social criticism in this series of photos, and the extremely sincere embrace of the amplitude and grandeur of the heroic technologies in the preceding post, are the work of the same man.