Photographer. Known for Depression-era documentary work, he created an icon of Dust Bowl devastation, “Farmer and Sons Walking in Dust Storm, Cimarron County, Oklahoma” (1936), depicting a man and two little boys trudging into the wind toward a weather-beaten hovel in a desolate landscape. Rothstein also numbered among leaders in developing magazine photojournalism. Shortly after graduation from Columbia University in 1935, the native New Yorker accepted the invitation of Roy Stryker, formerly a professor there, to set up the photography laboratory in Washington, D.C., for a new documentary project of the Resettlement Administration, later the Farm Security Administration. Rothstein had pursued photography only as a hobby, but within months he joined the photographic team, learning on the job from more experienced members, including Walker Evans and Ben Shahn. With the agency he traveled from Vermont to New Mexico, recording lives of ordinary citizens. In 1940 Rothstein joined the staff of Look magazine, where he remained, except for World War II service, until it folded in 1971. From 1972 until his death, he served as an editor at Parade. He published many articles and books, including an influential textbook, Photojournalism (1956). Other publications include Color Photography Now (1970), Words and Pictures (1979), Arthur Rothstein's America in Photographs, 1930–1980 (1984), and the posthumously published Documentary Photography (1986). He died in the New York suburb of New Rochelle, where he had made his home since the early 1950s.
Subjects: Photography and Photographs.