Mardi Gras is sure enough on my mind. I spent part of this afternoon reading an old interview with the great American photographer Jill Freedman. Even though she didn't mention New Orleans, reading about her and her work reminded me that I'd once seen a terrific photo that she made at Mardi Gras. I wanted to see it, again. It didn't take me long to find it -- the Smithsonian American Art Museum owns a print -- and it's just as good as I remembered.
Jill Freedman: Mardi Gras, 1973. (Smithsonian American Art Museum. Click on the photo to see a larger version.)
Freedman has long been one of the most influential American photographers. It was probably her photographs of the 1968 Poor Peoples' March on Washington, D.C., that first brought her a measure of fame. (Martin Luther King had been instrumental in planning the march, before his assassination in April 1968. It went on without his presence, but with his spirit.)
Freedman eventually became better known for her gritty photographs of life in New York City. (You get a sense of her taste for grit in the photo above. Remember, you can click on the photo to see a larger version.) A few years ago, the New York Times published a thoughtful commentary about her photos, as well as a slideshow of her work and a video about her career. You can read and see them, here.