Sun, 10/07/2012 – Sun, 01/13/2013


Walker Evans’s landmark photographs of Easton, Bethlehem, and other nearby locations were part of his work that changed the course of photographic history, especially in America.  In the 1930s, Evans created these and other images as part of federally sponsored programs that hired photographers to document America during the Great Depression. However, unlike earlier documentary photographers, Evans rejected Victorian notions of sentimentality and narrow-mindedness. Instead, his photographs are objective and open-minded. They demonstrate a new sensitivity and respect toward his subjects, regardless of how poor or otherwise disenfranchised they were.

Evans’s influence extended to the next generation of photographers as they explored America’s social landscape, and he personally championed Robert Frank, Diane Arbus, and Lee Friedlander. His presence is also echoed in the works of other photographers in this exhibition, including Garry Winogrand, Stephen Shore, Bill Owens, Leon Levinstein, and Judith Joy Ross. This exhibition was composed of photographs from the collection of Lehigh Valley resident David Sestak and complemented the Museum’s concurrent major exhibition, Franz Kline: Coal and Steel.  This exhibition was organized by Museum chief curator Dr. Diane P. Fischer, with the assistance of David Sestak, Thomas Shillea, and Santa Bannon-Shillea.

Walker Evans & The American Social Landscape Photographers is a part of Lehigh Valley Photography Month, part of the InVision Photo Festival™ presented by ArtsQuest™.

Major Sponsorship: The Leon C. and June W. Holt Endowment

Sustaining Sponsorship:  The Audrey and Bernard Berman Endowment Fund

Supporting Sponsorship: ICON, Senior Style


Larry Fink (b. 1941), Graduation, Bangor High School, Pennsylvania, June 1977. Courtesy of the photographer.