Home Opinion Dorothea Lange digital archive goes live

Dorothea Lange digital archive goes live


She was one of the most significant photographers of the 20th Century. Best known for documenting the lives of migrant farmworkers during the Great Depression in the 1930s, Dorothea Lange recorded American life in astounding detail. Thanks to the new Dorothea Digital Archive, you now have unrivalled access to her life as a photographer.

Lange addressed homelessness, the plight of detained Japanese American citizens during the Second World War and many other social issues of the era. She later recorded the effects of community displacement, the urban criminal justice system, and rural life in Europe, Asia, and Africa.

Dorothea Lange’s works are now available for online browsing at the museum’s website and it’s possible to spend an absorbing few hours conducting your own virtual museum visit. Photography, as a medium, lends itself perfectly to this sort of remote inspection and I can thoroughly recommend a visit.

Find the virtual tour here.

Via Red Dot Cameras, London


  1. For the Irish members she published a memorable set of photographs taken in Co Clare in probably the early 1950s. They are included in the online archive. It’s a time slice of Irish life that has long since disappeared. Reminds me of the characters of my childhood.

  2. Thanks a lot Jason for sharing. Her wonderful images have been included in my English classe for many years now. Pairing one of her images with some extracts of the grapes of wrath is laways a winner

  3. At The Gallery of Photography, Ireland we prepared and hung some of Dorothea’s Irish photographs for an exhibition at the National Museum of Ireland late last year. The exhibition, which was opened by the President of Ireland, also included photographs by Robert Cresswell (which we also prepared and hung) and by Henri Cartier Bresson. We were not allowed to touch the HCB photos and they had to prepared and hung by the Fondation HCB. The photographs by all 3 photographers really captured Ireland as it was in the 1950s. Some older people here can still remember Dorothea and speak very highly about her. She could also be very feisty and incurred the wrath of her ‘boss’ Roy Stryker at the FSA by publishing some of her Depression photos before he saw them. Legend has it that he had his revenge by punching holes in her remaining negatives that he did not want to be published to ensure that she did not repeat her ‘misdemeanour’. She has left a lasting legacy and really was ‘one of a kind’.



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