Mar 25, 2014
10:52 AM
Arts & Entertainment

Jazz Lives: Photos of Lee Friedlander, Milt Hinton Coming to Yale

Jazz Lives: Photos of Lee Friedlander, Milt Hinton Coming to Yale

Lee Friedlander

Young Tuxedo Brass Band, New Orleans, 1959. Gelatin silver print.

Nicknamed “The Judge,” the late jazz bassist Milt Hinton, who played with everyone from Cab Calloway to Branford Marsalis in his legendary career, was also a jazz photographer whose black-and-white images of fellow musicians were featured in exhibits and books.

“After the two books with my photographs came out, people got more interested in them than ever before,” Hinton said in writing about his jazz photography. “I had shows at places like the Rhode Island School of Design and the Denver Art Museum, which  I’ve been told are very prestigious.

(Above: Milt Hinton, Louis Armstrong, Hotel Room, Seattle, ca. 1954. Gelatin silver print.)

“Truthfully, that kind of thing has never really mattered to me. My main concern has always been that people from all walks of life have a chance to see my pictures. It’s important to me that they get shown at places where jazz fans go, like Monterey. And I also like the idea that they were shown at community centers and libraries in smaller towns around the country.”

Just as jazz was, and is, an American music that bridges all types of divides, Hinton’s photography knew no hierarchical limitations; the more folks who saw it, in whatever venue, the better—though Hinton did confess that a few exhibits were special. “One was a show I had with the great artist Jacob Lawrence in Hartford, Connecticut,” he said.

Hinton’s jazz photos are back in Connecticut starting in April, and being shown in a place “where jazz fans go,” New Haven.

From April 4 through Sept. 7, Yale University Art Gallery will be celebrating jazz photography in Jazz Lives: The Photographs of Lee Friedlander and Milt Hinton. The show, Yale says, brings together “extraordinary images that capture the people, spirit and history of jazz.”

Friedlander’s photographs of New Orleans musicians were made during a series of visits to the city from the late 1950s to the 1990s, while Hinton’s photos were shot over the course of his musical career, which spanned the 20th century, and offer an insider’s view of the jazz scene.

The exhibit was organized by students, including musicians from the Yale Undergraduate Jazz Collective. A terrific by-product of that will be performances by student, faculty and community jazz groups during the exhibition’s run.

 

Jazz Lives: Photos of Lee Friedlander, Milt Hinton Coming to Yale

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