New Mexico People Places and Ideas
Fri February 1, 2013
Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher - The Life of Photographer Edward Curtis
This month’s guest is New York Times writer and Pulitzer Prize winner author Timothy Egan whose latest work is a biography, Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher. Shadow catcher was the name given to acclaimed photographer Edward Curtis by American Indians as he traveled the country taking their photos and documenting their tradions, language and culture in the early 20th Century. Curtis, a famed photographer of the high and mighty, such as President Teddy Roosevelt and JP Morgan, forswore all riches to instead shoot individual portraits and document the everyday life of nearly 80 Indian tribes. He photographed Chief Joseph, Geronimo and 40,000 other Indians engaged in fishing, net-making, cooking and never-before-photographed tribal ceremonies. He traveled to our pueblos in New Mexico and to remote areas of Arizona, Montana, Oklahoma and California. The story of how and why he accomplished this is perfectly encapsulated in the sub-title of this biography: The Epic Life and Immortal Photographs of Edward S Curtis. So please join host Stephen Spitz, and author Timothy Egan as we explore one of the most amazing accomplishments of the 20th Century. Produced with the assistance of Joe Green.