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Toronto, Ontario, Canada
"To take a photograph is to align the head, the eye and the heart. It's a way of life." ~ Henri Cartier-Bresson

Monday, December 26, 2022

Sid Kaplan ~ Photographer Profile

Sid Kaplan was born in The Bronx in 1938. At the age of ten he became enamoured with the seemingly magical alchemy of the dark room. Seeing the latent image slowly reveal itself on photographic paper had him hooked for life. 

Kaplan gained notoriety as a master black-and-white printer, producing the work of other photographers such as Robert Frank (whose photographs he printed for 35 years), Philippe Halsman, Duane Michals and Weegee

Despite this esteemed circle, Kaplan’s career was primarily spent in obscurity, literally as much as figuratively. His own work has finally garnered him much deserved admiration. 

Kaplan’s work is available for purchase at the prestigious Les Douches La Galerie in Paris

New York City, 1999

Sid Kaplan has mentioned that the biggest highlight of his career was the day when he took a break from the darkroom with Mr. Frank. The two of them walked to a local bar for a beer when they ran into another photographer who lived next door, W. Eugene Smith. They invited him to join them and they spent the evening together swapping stories and comparing their royalties from the Minamata and The Americans. "This reinforced my feeling that photography was best practiced as a gentleman's hobby like Lartigue or Steiglitz

"I never wanted it to become just a job where editors' art directors and deadlines ruled; that would make me crazy and demoralized. Printing other people's work gave me the bucks to pursue my hobby and photograph what I want to without answering to anyone"

One Madison Ave, New York City, 1977-79 © Sid Kaplan 

Twin Towers, New York City, 1977-79 © Sid Kaplan 

Robert Frank introduced Kaplan to poet Allen Ginsberg, his neighbor and longtime friend, who would come directly to the darkroom to advise him on how to print portraits of Peter Orlovsky and William Burroughs. 


Check out video on Kaplan via link below. 

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