Revisit Dorothea Lange’s Beautiful Work Over the Years

Lange is most famous for her iconic photo ‘Migrant Mother’, the image that transcends time. Dive into the photos of her still-very-relevant realness when it comes to the American dream.

Photo by Dorothea Lange, Migrant Mother 1936

Late legendary Dorothea Lange is most famous for her iconic photo “Migrant Mother”, taken in 1936 while she was employed by the American government, in order to raise awareness for the impoverished farmers during The Great Depression. Dive into the imagery of her still-relevant realness when it comes to the American experience at large. The themes reflected in her work shine a light on the American dream, closeness and an expansive distant quality that transcends the human solitary experience.

Speaking on perhaps the most recognizable still photograph of all time, Lange recalled:

‘I saw and approached the hungry and desperate mother, as if drawn by a magnet. I do not remember how I explained my presence or my camera to her, but I do remember she asked me no questions. I made five exposures, working closer and closer from the same direction.’ Speaking on the mother herself, identified as a woman by the name of Florence Owens Thompson, she said: ‘She and her children had been living on frozen vegetables from the field and wild birds the children caught. The pea crop had frozen; there was no work. Yet they could not move on, for she had just sold the tires from the car to buy food.’


Fifty of her most iconic photos will be on display at the MoMa until May 9th.


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