Joel Meyerowitz: a lifetime of passion and love for photography

To suggest that I am a tremendous admirer of Joel Meyerowitz would be a gross understatement. I have several of his books on my shelf and bedside table. I return to them several times a year to appreciate the brilliance and for inspiration. I’ve watched and heard countless interviews. He has been a guest on the Candid Frame several times over the years and there are number of great recorded interviews on YouTube.

Joel recently sat down as a guest on Talk Easy and I absolutely loved this conversation. It might be one of my favorite Joel Meyerowitz interviews of all time. It’s clear that the host, Sam Fragoso, has spent a great deal of time being curious about Joel’s work and genuinely appreciate the photographs. I love the format of the interview. Sam and Joel spend over an hour talking about Joel’s life as they flip through a number of Joel’s photographs.

I also learned a number of things in this conversation that I did’t know previously about the “why” behind some of these iconic images. Joel speaks from the heart about his life’s experience about his own journey and challenges. For someone that always seemingly comes across as happy and joyful, you can feel the pain as he describes his first marriage as essentially a long term loveless affair as well as his own father’s sadness in being in an unhappy marriage.

But the thing that comes out the most throughout the entire interview is Joe’s lifetime of passion and love for photography. At 82 years of age, he speaks with the clarity and poise of a much younger man who has just fallen in love. But in this case, we are talking about someone who has been making photographs for over 58 years, from the streets of NYC and Europe with a 35mm Leica camera to large format view camera on Cape Cod and New York and then to his most recent body of work — 365 days of self portraits during the Covid19 quarantine.

It’s a breath of fresh air to hear Joel talk about photography. You can feel the authenticity behind every shared sentiment and his words are poetic.

Thank you Joel for your amazing gift and for your inspiration.

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