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Original author: 
Cory Doctorow


Form and Landscape is a stupendous collection of photos documenting the electrification of Los Angeles, culled from ConEd's archives (Edison International underwrote the exhibition). The pictures are presented with fascinating articles in Spanish and English, and are curated by William Deverell and Greg Hise.

The documentary record tells a story of better living, improvement, and uplift all made possible through the power of electricity or “white gold,” the company’s term of art for its product. Boosters spoke fervently about the opportunity a regular supply of electricity created and the benefit it would provide a mass of people for whom ready access to white gold meant extended hours of productive labor, enhanced quality of their leisure hours, and greater safety while traveling in and about the company’s service area by foot, by mass transit, or by automobile. It is a story of private enterprise elevating individual and collective wellbeing and in doing so contributing toward the public good by taking the smoke out of manufacturing; by making the labor of workers, both wage-earners and domestic, more efficient; by increasing safety and deterring crime; by improving health.

About the Project — FORM and LANDSCAPE
(via The Guardian Art and Design)

(Image, above: "Commercial Lighting Doug White (No date)")

I've included some of my favorites below:


Commercial Lighting Doug White (No date)


A Family at Home Joseph Fadler 1966


Electrical workers fashion show Joseph Fadler 1970


Kern River No. 3 Powerhouse, Edison generators attest to the quest for power, Kern County G. Haven Bishop 1928


Carl's Whistle Stop Char Broiled Hamburgers Joseph Fadler 1967

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The wedding season in India lasts for four months. During wedding celebrations the bridegroom’s family normally hires a brass band service to play at the wedding procession, in which the groom’s family dances all the way to the wedding venue where the bride’s family waits to receive them. The members of the band come together [...]

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Fishermen living around the port of El Callao, Peru have harvested the sea as a means of survival since the 16th century. Now, a global shipping industry giant based in the Netherlands is planning a project to modernize El Callao, Peru’s largest and oldest port. The project will expand port operations over the next couple [...]

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China’s communist leaders are promising to revolutionize the world’s second largest economy and move on from being the world’s workshop. Unlike most communist governments, China’s one-party state has survived by embracing capitalism to deliver new wealth. Chinese officials recently reported they would reach their target for annual economic growth of 7.5 percent this year despite [...]

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Jesse Brown sez, "My uncle, the amazing photographer Robert Burley, captured the death
of analog photography: the demolition of Kodak plants, the rapid
downfall of the film photography industry, the sudden obsolescence of
neighbourhood photo shops and subway photo booths. Naturally, he did so on film.

His book, Disappearance of Darkness, was just released, and some of
the gorgeous, haunting images are featured today on CNN's website."

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CMGW Photography snapped this beautiful shot, "First Contact," in which a young girl and a manatee share a moment through a pane of glass.

First Contact

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In National Geographic, a rare moment of marine nomadism, as a sea nomad child called Enal hitches a ride by holding onto the tail of his friend, a tawny nurse shark. The picture is by James Morgan, submitted to the National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest (Top prize: Photo expedition for two to the Galapagos with a National Geographic photographer).

Enal, a young sea nomad, rides on the tail of a tawny nurse shark, in Sulawesi, Indonesia. Marine nomadism has almost completely disappeared in South East Asia as a result of severe marine degradation. I believe children such as Enal have stories that could prove pivotal in contemporary marine conservation.

Spontaneous Moments—Week 4 Gallery

(Thanks, Marilyn!)

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