Marvin E. Newman

Marvin E. Newman (1927- ) began studying photography at the age of sixteen at Brooklyn College with Walter Rosenblum and Berenice Abbott.  Newman briefly became a member of the Photo League of New York, where he took classes with league member John Ebstel.  In 1949 Newman went to Chicago to study with Harry Callahan and Aaron Siskind at the Institute of Design, becoming one of the first students to earn a Master’s Degree in Photography in 1952. Newman often photographed in the streets of Chicago with fellow student Yasuhiro Ishimoto, with whom he made the experimental film The Church on Maxwell Street, which documented the sights and sounds of a sidewalk revivalist church in Chicago’s fabled marketplace.  Newman’s Master’s thesis, “A Creative Analysis of the Series Form in Still Photography,” explored repeated forms in series: of children’s faces; of people in similar positions and poses; and of inverted human shadows on the sidewalk.  Also in 1952 Newman was included in “Always the Young Stranger,” an important group show at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, that introduced a new generation of American photographic talent.  In 1956 he had a one-man show at Roy deCarava’s,  A  Photographer’s Gallery.  In 1964 Newman served as cinematographer for a documentary, “Jose Torres,” directed by Hroshi Tesigahara. Unlike some of his fellow graduates, Newman did not pursue teaching as a career, but followed the path of photojournalism.  In 1953 he became a contributing photographer for Sports Illustrated, and later began shooting for Life, Look, and Esquire. A track runner himself, Newman was a natural as a sports photojournalist, and covered the 1960 Rome Olympics as the official photographer for Sports Illustrated.  He documented untold numbers of other important events.  One such was the 1960 World Series between the Pittsburgh Pirates and the New York Yankees. Newman made an astonishing capture of the  home run hit by Bill Mazeroski with the score tied in the bottom half of the ninth inning of the seventh game to beat the Yankees for the title.  In 2009 Abrams published Yankee Color: The Glory Years of the Mantle Era, with 235 photographs, all by Newman. He was one of the only sports photographers of the time shooting in color.  Newman’s career includes countless non-sporting essays: life on Wall Street; existence in rough-and- tumble Alaska; prostitutes on Paris’ infamous Rue Saint-Denis, the circus, to name a few.   Newman’s work has been exhibited at museums across the country.  He has been national president of the American Society of Media (formerly Magazine) Photographers.  In 1983, as president, Newman led a cultural delegation to China as guests of the Chinese government.   He has authored or co-authored nine photographic books.  His many awards include the Art Directors’ Club Gold Medalfor Editorial Photography.   Newman lives in New Jersey, from where he has traveled to give talks on various aspects of his career and where he works with his archive.