To say Stephen B. Jareckie was passionate about photography is a gross understatement. He nearly had film developer flowing in his veins, a flash dice regularly heading off in his head, a true eye for photographic artwork and a camera shutter flickering in his coronary heart.
“Perhaps pictures are a substitute for the genuine environment or slicing a little something out of time, but they have a beauty of their individual, just as pictures, as illustrations or photos on paper, and the surface area and the different emotions,” Jareckie instructed the Telegram & Gazette in October 2002.
Jareckie died Sept. 25 at the age of 92, but his legacy lives on in two art museums — rather fantastic for some who had first encounters with photography as a 10-12 months-aged attending summer season camp in New Hampshire.
Lengthy just before society snapped selfies on their smartphones, Jareckie was Worcester Art Museum’s curator of photography for near to 35 decades.
Immediately after “officially” retiring in April 1996, he became the consulting curator for images at the Fitchburg Art Museum for an added 20-in addition years.
The longtime Holden resident produced a lifelong occupation of scrutinizing, categorizing and appreciating the good works of photographic masters.
“We had box cameras and took pictures,” Jareckie told The Night Gazette in January 1999. “We opened the cameras in a darkroom and printed the shots. I just obtained hooked on it.”
Shot pictures for high university yearbook
As a teenager, the Madison, New Jersey, native began making photographs for his 1951 superior school yearbook, and as a member of the school’s digital camera club.
As a great arts important at Lehigh College, Jareckie’s only speak to with images was as a member of the camera club. His father, an eminently useful gentleman, permitted him to major in art but insisted that he acquire an engineering drawing program.
When the Korean War broke out between his junior and senior several years, Jareckie was known as up into the Army. He was authorized to get his diploma and then expended 15 months executing personnel function in Korea.
His working experience with both equally the digital camera and engineering drawing arrived in handy later, for the duration of his graduate scientific studies at Syracuse College, when he executed a key architectural study of an upstate mill city identified as New York Mills, a local community of unaltered 19th century properties patterned immediately after those in Lowell.
And he gained his initial knowledge with wonderful artwork photography with a curatorial occupation at Munson-William-Proctor Institute in Utica, New York.
Jareckie arrived at the Worcester Artwork Museum in 1961 to take a job as museum registrar, sustaining the information of the museum collection and arranging transportation when functions would go out on personal loan.
Jareckie’s fascination in images was regarded by then museum director Daniel Catton Rich. In 1962, when Loaded made the decision to expand the museum’s selection with pictures, he questioned Jareckie to be the curator.
For the next 21 several years, Jareckie ongoing to serve as registrar even as he crafted and arranged the museum’s images collection. It was not until finally 1983 that he grew to become the museum’s 1st whole-time curator of images.
In 1976, he was curator of the Worcester Art Museum’s large Bicentennial Exhibit and investigated and wrote the exhibition’s sizeable catalog.
Created museum’s photography collection
Jareckie is usually credited for practically singlehandedly developed the museum’s images collection.
For the duration of any provided year he would organize at minimum just one big images exhibition and four or 5 minimal demonstrates. By the time he retired, the collection would contain 1,800 photographic pictures.
Not only does the Worcester Art Museum selection obtained by Jareckie encompass the historical past of pictures, it reflects, as effectively, the vital alterations in technology and aesthetics that have unfolded.
The selection also consists of most of the best names ever to peer as a result of a lens, which include Alfred Stieglitz, Mathew Brady, Edward Weston, Walker Evans, Arnold Newman, Margaret Bourke-White, Ansel Adams, Diane Arbus and many, quite a few other people.
Nancy Burns — Worcester Artwork Museum Stoddard Affiliate Curator of Prints, Drawings and Photographs — said it “remains an honor to continue to gain from the incredible collection” Jareckie built above the several years.
“As incredible as he was as a curator, he was even additional generous as a colleague,” Burns mentioned of Jareckie. “He was a trailblazer in the subject, the foundation for the Worcester Artwork Museum’s images collection, and a amazing useful resource for tales of any kind.”
Worcester Artwork Museum’s Director Emeritus James A. Welu reported Jareckie was an invaluable source on the Museum’s historical past.
“Steve was a wonderful colleague who through his lots of yrs at the Worcester Art Museum contributed immeasurably to the Museum’s pioneering part in the recognition of photography as a legitimate artwork kind,” Welu said.
Of his quite a few exhibition he curated at the Fitchburg Art Museum, Jareckie was extremely very pleased of 2007’s “Ansel Adams in the East: Cruising the Inland Waterway in 1940,” which showcased more than 4 dozen, never-just before-exhibited 5-inch proofs, enlarged from 2¼-inch negatives, taken by American learn Ansel Adams.
Adams’ work always a favourite
Jareckie, who had always been eager on Adams, employed to marvel that by combining chemistry and optics just one can capture the total wealthy pageantry of lifetime and document important occasions.
“I am intrigued in the flexibility of what pictures can do,” Jareckie explained to The Evening Gazette in 2002. “I see a connecting amongst pictures and daily life as we see it. It provides experiences we have into focus.”
He continued to do cataloging, investigation, and do the job on shows at Fitchburg until finally he turned unwell.
For its Regional Exhibition of Artwork & Craft, the Fitchburg Artwork Museum set up the Stephen Jareckie Photography Prize.
Fitchburg Art Museum Director Nicholas Capasso known as Jareckie “a giant in his subject.”
“He significantly sophisticated the medium of images, and was often generous with his time, intellect, and practical experience,” Capasso said. “Stephen was devoted to mentoring quite a few curators, collection professionals, educators, fellows, and interns — and directors — about the years. He cherished interacting with his youthful colleagues, and he took excellent pleasure in their perform.”
With a status of staying insightful, effectively-informed and once in a while a bit quirky, Jareckie also understood the stories powering the pictures, which normally extra an added dimension to the art.
“It’s (Photography’s) all over the landscape and, of program, it is really in all the publications. Someway or an additional, in people’s minds, it really is been denigrated, in a sense, and undervalued. And this has generally been the situation,” Jareckie claimed in 2002. “What you uncover in photography is a tiny, tiny share rises to the floor to become traditional illustrations or photos or icon illustrations or photos.”
He leaves his spouse of 62 years, Gretchen two nephews and four nieces.
A funeral support will be at 11 a.m. on Tuesday at Very first Congregational Church of Holden, 1180 Key St., Holden.
A non-public burial will be held at Massachusetts Nationwide Cemetery, Bourne. Miles Funeral Residence, 1158 Primary St., Holden, is conducting arrangements.