Sid Grossman and his photographs were largely forgotten after his untimely death in 1955 at the age of forty-two. One of the founders of the left-leaning Photo League (1936-51), Grossman was labeled a Communist and blacklisted in 1949. A demanding and capricious teacher who challenged his students to think critically about all aspects of their photography, Grossman's own approach to imagemaking and his remarkable body of work were constantly evolving. This monograph, the first comprehensive survey of Sid Grossman's life and work, contains more than 150 photographs that demonstrate Grossman's enduring talent and depth. The images range from his early social documentary work of the late 1930s to the more personal and dynamic street photography of the late 1940s, as well as late experiments with abstraction in both black and white and color. It features a biographical and critical essay by the renowned curator and photo historian, Keith F. Davis, which traces Grossman's evolution as a photographer and examines his considerable influence as a teacher.
The book concludes with an extensive selection of excerpts from a transcript of tape recordings of a course that Grossman taught in the spring of 1950 in which he expounds his views on photography, art, and creativity.