Vintage landscape: Chicago mural

Vintage landscape:enclos*ure - Chicago mural, 1973, John H. White, via Natl. Archives“Deteriorated wall mural adjacent to a vacant lot on 35th Street in South Side Chicago. Many Black artists are active in painting outdoor murals in the city’s Black communities. They feel it is a means of sharing art with people of the ghetto who never go to the museums.”

This July 1973 photo was taken by John H. White for DOCUMERICA, a 1970’s photography program of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.  It’s shown here with the original caption.

The EPA hired over 100 photographers to “document subjects of environmental concern.”  The work continued until 1977 and left behind an archive of about 20,000 images.

In addition to recording damage to the nation’s landscapes, the project captured “the era’s trends, fashions, problems, and achievements,” according to the U.S. National Archives, which held an exhibit of the photos, “Searching for the Seventies,” in 2013. 

There are more pictures from DOCUMERICA here.

2 thoughts on “Vintage landscape: Chicago mural

  1. Cindy, I am enjoying enormously the Documerica photos from the 1970s. The show an era and a mind-set that is distant from today’s world. Thank you.

    1. I’m so happy to have found them, although it’s a bit hard to accept the decade of my teenage years as “vintage.”

      I think the captions are as revealing of the time as the images.

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