close up image of a woman reading a book of Durham images called 'Transitions: The American Tobacco Factory' monochrome image of a man at a photo art gallery giving a talk

The ATC in B/W:

Through This Lens gallery in Down­town Durham is host­ing a fan­tas­tic show­ing of The Amer­i­can Tobac­co Fac­to­ry: A Ref­or­ma­tion of a Fac­to­ry and a City Pho­tographs by Michael Rosen­berg.

Michael doc­u­ment­ed the aban­doned Amer­i­can Tobac­co Cam­pus through ren­o­va­tion on large for­mat (4x5″) film for over six years.

There’s so much to like in this show. The grungy fac­to­ry, the photographer’s sense of design, but for many Durham res­i­dents, it’s the his­to­ry and the sto­ries the pho­tos evoke. Peo­ple were jok­ing about what a nasty, eye­sore sham­bles (and pink at that!) the old bull durham build­ing was. And the deep­er his­to­ry of tobac­co in the south, and the pho­tos doc­u­ment­ing the ‘white only’ door signs. Michael made an astute point of how the ‘col­ored’ door used a sten­cil… ready to be used over, and over again. A sim­ple arti­fact like that, well doc­u­ment­ed has real impact.

Includ­ed in the book are also some before and after images as well. For some­one new to Durham, like me, these are sto­ries, and this show, are not to be missed.

Pho­tos by Huth­Pho­to


Through This Lens Gallery

Down­town Durham NC

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