City Paper is not for tourists
The photographs of A. Aubrey Bodine, now on display at the Kathleen Ewing Gallery, will be a jolt for those whose mental image of modern-day Baltimore oscillates between the urban decay of The Wire and the yuppie paradise of Camden Yards. Bodine, a longtime photographer for Charm City’s Sunday Sun Magazine, captured the industrial bustle of his hometown back when it had some, roughly from the 1930s to the early 1960s. (He died in 1970.) Using a medium-format camera and tones that ranged from inky black to warm sepia, Bodine flattered his subjects—stevedores, firemen, steelworkers, and sailors (lots of them)—using an approach that blended the romantic pictorialism of the late 1800s with an earnest, mid-20th-century admiration for the working man. This approach sometimes makes his pictures seem dated, but most of the time, their visual vibrancy wins out. THE EXHIBITION IS ON VIEW BY APPOINTMENT TO OCT. 31, AT THE KATHLEEN EWING GALLERY, 3615 ORDWAY ST. NW. FREE. (202) 328-0955.