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Wayne Miller, LIFE Photojournalist Dies

By Holly Stuart Hughes


The American photographer Wayne Forest Miller
© Courtesy Joan B. Miller / Magnum Photos
The American photographer Wayne Forest Miller.

Wayne Miller, who achieved renown for his documentary work portraying life on the troubled South Side of Chicago in the 1940s, died today, according to his agency, Magnum Photos. He was 94.

After studying photography at the Art Center School of Los Angeles, Miller served during World War II in the US Navy Combat Photo Unit under Edward Steichen. He won two Guggenheim fellowships to explore the life of African-Americans who had migrated from the South to Chicago and other northern US cities. These explorations were eventually published in his book, Chicago's South Side: 1946-48, published in 2000 by University of California Press.

He began shooting for LIFE magazine in 1953. He assisted his old boss Edward Steichen on the creation of the historic exhibition "The Family of Man" at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

He became a member of Magnum Photos in 1958, and served as its president from 1962 to 1966.

Miller's documentary work has been exhibited at the Stephen Daiter Gallery in Chicago, the Lee Gallery in Winchester, Massachusetts and elsewhere. His work is also included in several anthologies, including Steichen at War.

In a statement, Alex Majoli, current president of Magnum Photos, called Miller "a pioneer." "He paved the ground for the rest of us who tried to depict the streets, the real life."

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