Dundee: Washing strung between tenements (1948 (printed 1989))
About this artwork
This photograph was taken in Dundee during the filming of a documentary ‘Scottish Universities’. It was a film about the foundation and growth of the four Scottish universities: St. Andrews, Glasgow, Aberdeen and Edinburgh. A beautifully composed image, Suschitzky draws the viewer into the scene. The washing poles and lines heavy with clothes allow the eye to dance across the image. Gradually from the darker areas figures appear, the two girls in chatting in the foreground, the lone figure in the alley behind and the young boys gathered on a terrace at the right.
Wolfgang Suschitzky, a photographer and cameraman born in Vienna, became one of the leading documentary makers on the British film market. He came to England in 1934 and signed up with Paul Rotha's Strand Films company in London. In a career spanning sixty years he has shot over a hundred films for both government agencies and commercial companies, including classics such as Ring of Bright Water (1969) and Get Carter (1970). Wherever he travelled, he also took his stills camera, snatching time from film making to build a significant archive of documentary photographs.