A snapshot of a lifetime

ST Anne’s Nursing Home resident Max Samuelson, pictured, shared his love and memories of photography with other residents and their friends and family during his very own photography exhibition, set up with the help of Red Cross volunteer Ashley Stewart.

Showcasing around 300 photos, the exhibition tells the story of Mr Samuelson’s career as a professional photographer – from working at an American metropolitan newspaper and acting as a tutor in residential photography in Campbell Town to doing talkback radio on the ABC and publishing numerous articles in photography publications.

Mr Samuelson lives at St Anne’s Nursing Home with advanced Parkinson’s disease, which has left him in a state where he can hardly speak.

Mr Stewart said this exhibition was a chance for Mr Samuelson to showcase his talent and vast collection.

“I’ve been visiting Max for a bit over three years now and we had a very successful exhibition two years ago,” he said.

“Max said to me that he had all these hundreds of photos and that he’d like to put on an exhibition and it grew from there.

“Feedback was excellent two years ago – that’s why we’ve put on another one now.”

Mr Stewart said Mr Samuelson had about 2000 photos spanning a career of 50 years that he had taken on his four-by-five handmade pinhole camera.

“We had these huge boxes filled up with all these different photos and I sat with Max and asked him which images he wanted to include,” he said.

“We went through hundreds and hundreds to get the 300 for the first exhibition and then this one as well.”

With the exhibition being divided into the three sections of people, flowers and water, Mr Samuelson aimed to show people what could be done with black and white photos.

“I always thought black and white was old hat, but when you see what he’s done with the black and white camera it’s amazing,” Mr Stewart said.

The exhibition was a great boost for Mr Samuelson’s morale and also helped inspire other residents.

“Other residents are keen to do something similar for themselves now that they’ve seen Max’s success,” Mr Stewart said.

“Not necessarily with photography, but with painting, handcrafts and other things – more of them are becoming open about that and saying they could try.”

St Anne’s resident Brenda Banting had the opportunity to visit the exhibition and said it was a great collection of beautiful photographs.

“It’s quite amazing – they’re very artistic and very lovely,” she said.

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The Hobart Observer is your monthly community newspaper, reaching over 24,000 homes and businesses in and around the City of Hobart. It is the product of Nicolas Turner, Justine Brazil, Ben Hope, Simon Andrews, Tobias Hinds and guest contributors, with support from advertisers.

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