Norma Holt: They Faced the Sea

They faced the sea.

The women featured in Norma Holt's last major project – the large public display shown above, which she undertook at age 85 - did what the wives, mothers and daughters of fishermen, sailors and sea captains have done for eons: they faced the sea. They watched and waited for the safe return of their men, for the bounty of the sea, for the relief of calm waters. From the 1950s until her death on 2013, Norma Holt captured extraordinary photographs of ordinary people in the grips of challenging circumstances around the world - whether the hard working life of fishermen or artists, poverty, war, political upheaval, health crises or simply, old age. Her eye was always focused unerringly on her subjects, and her goal was always social justice, humanity, and simple human dignity. The gallery here, like all of her photos, displays large her photographic signature: the direct, unedited gaze of her subject. Powerful, moving, and evocative, this gallery has outlived her, but not her vision, artistry or concern for the very real people she photographed.

You can see more of Norma Holt’s riveting photographs at POBA | Where The Arts Live, an online arts hub and resource center that displays, promotes and preserves creative legacies, helps folks that own or manage a creative legacy or arts collection to ensure these collections live on, and helps working artists to manage their own works for future preservation, viewing, and value.