Hot Shot Eastbound by O. Winston Link
Hot Shot Eastbound by O. Winston Link
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Hot Shot Eastbound by O. Winston Link

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Size: 28"x32"

Classic Black & White photograph by renowned artist O. Winston Link. An old Steam Engine train passes by a drive-in movie theater in 1950s America. Great companion piece to: " ". Mini Light Bulbs in train headlight and top of theater screen. Red L.E.D.s in car tail lights.

In mid 1950s America, O Winston Link was on a mission to record the last days of the great steam engine trains. Link specialized in rail photography and more particularly, night photography. This image entitled "Hot Shot Eastbound" and "Montgomery Tunnel" are two of his well known examples- both capturing the magic of the Steam Engine making their way at night. Link’s interest in railroads goes back to his Brooklyn roots. Link once said: “The train is as close to a human as you can get. It moves, it talks, it grunts and groans. He would later note that each engine had its own unique sound as well. Capturing his railroad Art Link used a large format view camera. In his library are more than 2400 photos of trains operated by Norfolk and Western most of them taken at night. The company operated their famous Steam Engine trains until 1960.

Although his photos were spontaneous for the most part Link often made extensive preparations in advance and performed some darkroom edits after the shot. “Hot Shot Eastbound” was captured on August 2nd, 1956 in the town of Laeger, West Virginia. Link's goal was to depict small-town American life as it existed at the time. As the steam engine symbolically rolls by the outdoor drive in theater Link's own 1952 convertible is featured in the center with a young couple sitting in a 1952 Buick convertible. The couple and the car take center stage. The image on the movie screen of an Air Force jet fighter was added in the darkroom as a symbol of American power at the time. The photo Link captured marks a poignant moment of American lifestyle in transition. The 50s was the start of consumer excess conspicuous consumption. To Link's way of thinking no setting captured this better than the outdoor drive in theater. As we approached 1960 the U.S. population was 42 million and car sales were just shy of 10 million per year. This was a time under the Eisenhower administration when a large part of the transportation budget was being spent on highway expansion and a mere fraction going to public transportation. The City of Los Angeles had more cars than most Countries at the time.