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Looking Back On Larry Sultan's 'Pictures From Home'

Dec 18, 2009 (Fresh Air from WHYY)

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The influential photographer Larry Sultan died of cancer on Sunday. He was 63. In remembrance, we listen to a 1989 interview with him in which we discuss "Pictures from Home," his decade-long project chronicling his father's job loss and the effects it had on the family.

The project began when Sultan's father, Irving, was forced into early retirement after serving as vice president of the Schick Safety Razor Co. It evolved and expanded to include video stills from his family's home movies and an ongoing commentary by both of Sultan's parents.

From 1992 to 1996, the traveling exhibition, "Larry Sultan: Pictures from Home," was shown at the Bronx Museum of Art; the Scottsdale Center for the Arts in Scottsdale, Ariz.; the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.; the Chicago Cultural Center; San Diego's Museum of Contemporary Art; and the San Jose Museum of Art in California.

Sultan was born in New York in 1946. His family quickly relocated to California, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from the University of California-Santa Barbara and a Master of Fine Arts degree from the San Francisco Art Institute.

He was a distinguished professor in both the undergraduate photography program and the graduate program in fine arts at California College of the Arts in San Francisco. He received many grants, and his work is part of many collections, including at the Smithsonian and the Center for Creative Photography.

This interview was originally broadcast July 12, 1989.

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