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It is helpful to once in a while stir the stew.

Navigating the road between maintaining personal freedom and earning a crust can be a rocky one. Sit in one place too long and stagnate or cut loose until the cash runs out. Armed with a restless spirit perhaps the decision becomes easier, but maybe not the road. 

Burk Uzzle has carved out a career with the ideas of integrity and personal freedom always close at hand. He joined LIFE magazine at the tender age of 23, and later became member and twice president of institutional heavyweight Magnum. Needless to say Burk Uzzle has two feet firmly planted in the tradition of classic story telling. With an eye keenly fixed on a distinctly American sensibility, Uzzle dances between humour and wit, shrewdly capturing a portrait of his countrymen. 


From Woodstock to Martin Luther King’s funeral, Uzzle has been witness to some of the defining moments in recent history - his photographs are lucid documents of that cultural giant we call America. With such an iconic catalogue, it was our pleasure to have a chinwag with the man about how heart, mind and energy creates great work.

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It seems from very early on you knew you wanted to be a photographer, Growing up in small-town North Carolina, was there a desire to see father afield? Is it curiosity that made you want to take photographs? 

I certainly had a natural curiosity for that big world out there that I kept seeing in Life Magazine. A small town that I really did not like at all accentuated that. Still, I have always liked to keep moving and have a tradition of getting restless.

Now, however, after settling into another small town in North Carolina after decades of living all over the place, an interesting new development has changed how I think about subject matter.

I’ve found that working with the same people over and over, and staying within a particular community and knowing these people really well has brought out a much greater sensitivity.

It’s going deeper in the well, as opposed to hopping from place to place and being relegated to surfing the surface. Even with dramatic and exotic subjects and places, and perhaps especially if one is hooked on the exotic and sensational, working too quickly can often presuppose superficiality.

Also helpful is working with large format film with the demands of discipline and craft. I tend to perceive and compose and “feel” the pictures much better with that kind of approach. Emotional depth does not suffer with that approach. And, it has a great “Look.”

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A great deal of your archive focuses on the American landscape, you once said that its craziness, the humor, the bizarre, the loneliness, and its starkness give you a kick. Could you elaborate on that and perhaps the distinctly American vision that preoccupies you?

The American Landscape has its concrete and pavement and angularity within which nature makes, generally, a token sort of appearance. Our discordant American aesthetic has been slow to develop a visual culture.

That automatically offers opportunities for the “Poor Lonesome Me” look, which I try to avoid. Then there is satire, or more preferably whimsy and humor. The “Pop Art” sense of graphics, when I can keep myself out of the “Kitsch Ditch,” is a hoot to work with.

There is an excitement to the energy of color and space relationships that come naturally in America. I have written on the back of my cameras the word “celebrate.” (As opposed to “incriminate”) That does not need to imply blandness, or a simplistic mentality.

The classic photo essay is for the most part a thing of the past, working for LIFE must have afforded you the time and commitment to engage with your subjects, do you mourn the death of publications like LIFE and classic story telling?

Yes. However, there was a formula approach that we saw in some of those essays. That’s only natural in a professional realm with the marketplace as a critical partner.

That is noticeable in much of the journalism of today, and possibly even more so in much of the art community. Not that this is anything new in the history of the world.

Question is, how to be better than that, and make a living.

Is teaching the answer? For me, no.

Some of the best work, but certainly not all, has been done by independently wealthy folks.

I have great admiration for those sturdy souls that are simply bound and determined to do things as they think they should be, and let the commercial chips fall where they may.

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The death of Martin Luther King was one of the defining moments in a very tumultuous chapter in American history, after photographing him in life, it must have been hard to photograph his funeral, how did his death effect you personally and more broadly the American experience?

It was a heartbreak, from which we gained courage.

Most people would give their left leg to shoot for Magnum, being given the stripes, was it a defining moment in your career? Do you feel like it pushed you as a photographer?

Yes. Magnum was small when I was a member, and we hung out together. Those conversations were life changing.

There are echoes of Henri Cartier-Bresson’s work in your own, his ability to squeeze the uncanny out of the everyday, what was it like working with the man? What do you look for when taking a photograph?

I showed my work to HCB quite a few times, and will never forget some of his most direct advice. “Respect Your Subject.” Study the Quattrocento painters. Never explicit in detailed methodology, his advice was the kind of head-trip that forced growth, if one was capable.

Having been twice president for the agency, what do you think Magnum is to photography now, do you think its haloed mantle is still relevant with shifts in contemporary photography?

I left Magnum in 1983, after 15 years as a member, when it was quite small compared to today’s Magnum population. I left because, as another ex-Magnum photographer, Ernst Haas, so eloquently put it: “after a while, being in Magnum is like holding hands and dancing in a circle.”

I agree with that ” holding hands” observation, but would also suggest the same was true after being with Life, or any other organization for a prolonged time.

I do not have informed knowledge or opinion about today’s Magnum, but I’m sure their standards are very high.

All of those environments have their own theology, points of view about how they, as a group, see themselves in the context of the big outside world.

It is helpful to once in a while stir the stew.

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  • S U N ( D A E ) D A Y - S U B M I S S I O N S  Our inbox has been receiving an overwhelming amount of warm feelings from Melbourne lately, here’s us letting you know it’s mutual. Peel your eyes from whatever else it is you’re doing at the moment and treat them to a generous dose of southern magic, featuring work from Paul John Nelson, Michael Thomas and Luke Van Aurich.Paul John Nelson - Images one to three.
Michael Thomas - Images four to six.
Luke Van Aurich - Images seven to nine.If you would like to see your work featured as part of SUN (DAE) DAY Submissions, please send a handful of jpegs, a link to your portfolio and a short description on your work or series to:        - submissions@theheavycollective.com
  • S U N ( D A E ) D A Y - S U B M I S S I O N S  Our inbox has been receiving an overwhelming amount of warm feelings from Melbourne lately, here’s us letting you know it’s mutual. Peel your eyes from whatever else it is you’re doing at the moment and treat them to a generous dose of southern magic, featuring work from Paul John Nelson, Michael Thomas and Luke Van Aurich.Paul John Nelson - Images one to three.
Michael Thomas - Images four to six.
Luke Van Aurich - Images seven to nine.If you would like to see your work featured as part of SUN (DAE) DAY Submissions, please send a handful of jpegs, a link to your portfolio and a short description on your work or series to:        - submissions@theheavycollective.com
  • S U N ( D A E ) D A Y - S U B M I S S I O N S  Our inbox has been receiving an overwhelming amount of warm feelings from Melbourne lately, here’s us letting you know it’s mutual. Peel your eyes from whatever else it is you’re doing at the moment and treat them to a generous dose of southern magic, featuring work from Paul John Nelson, Michael Thomas and Luke Van Aurich.Paul John Nelson - Images one to three.
Michael Thomas - Images four to six.
Luke Van Aurich - Images seven to nine.If you would like to see your work featured as part of SUN (DAE) DAY Submissions, please send a handful of jpegs, a link to your portfolio and a short description on your work or series to:        - submissions@theheavycollective.com
  • S U N ( D A E ) D A Y - S U B M I S S I O N S  Our inbox has been receiving an overwhelming amount of warm feelings from Melbourne lately, here’s us letting you know it’s mutual. Peel your eyes from whatever else it is you’re doing at the moment and treat them to a generous dose of southern magic, featuring work from Paul John Nelson, Michael Thomas and Luke Van Aurich.Paul John Nelson - Images one to three.
Michael Thomas - Images four to six.
Luke Van Aurich - Images seven to nine.If you would like to see your work featured as part of SUN (DAE) DAY Submissions, please send a handful of jpegs, a link to your portfolio and a short description on your work or series to:        - submissions@theheavycollective.com
  • S U N ( D A E ) D A Y - S U B M I S S I O N S  Our inbox has been receiving an overwhelming amount of warm feelings from Melbourne lately, here’s us letting you know it’s mutual. Peel your eyes from whatever else it is you’re doing at the moment and treat them to a generous dose of southern magic, featuring work from Paul John Nelson, Michael Thomas and Luke Van Aurich.Paul John Nelson - Images one to three.
Michael Thomas - Images four to six.
Luke Van Aurich - Images seven to nine.If you would like to see your work featured as part of SUN (DAE) DAY Submissions, please send a handful of jpegs, a link to your portfolio and a short description on your work or series to:        - submissions@theheavycollective.com
  • S U N ( D A E ) D A Y - S U B M I S S I O N S  Our inbox has been receiving an overwhelming amount of warm feelings from Melbourne lately, here’s us letting you know it’s mutual. Peel your eyes from whatever else it is you’re doing at the moment and treat them to a generous dose of southern magic, featuring work from Paul John Nelson, Michael Thomas and Luke Van Aurich.Paul John Nelson - Images one to three.
Michael Thomas - Images four to six.
Luke Van Aurich - Images seven to nine.If you would like to see your work featured as part of SUN (DAE) DAY Submissions, please send a handful of jpegs, a link to your portfolio and a short description on your work or series to:        - submissions@theheavycollective.com
  • S U N ( D A E ) D A Y - S U B M I S S I O N S  Our inbox has been receiving an overwhelming amount of warm feelings from Melbourne lately, here’s us letting you know it’s mutual. Peel your eyes from whatever else it is you’re doing at the moment and treat them to a generous dose of southern magic, featuring work from Paul John Nelson, Michael Thomas and Luke Van Aurich.Paul John Nelson - Images one to three.
Michael Thomas - Images four to six.
Luke Van Aurich - Images seven to nine.If you would like to see your work featured as part of SUN (DAE) DAY Submissions, please send a handful of jpegs, a link to your portfolio and a short description on your work or series to:        - submissions@theheavycollective.com
  • S U N ( D A E ) D A Y - S U B M I S S I O N S  Our inbox has been receiving an overwhelming amount of warm feelings from Melbourne lately, here’s us letting you know it’s mutual. Peel your eyes from whatever else it is you’re doing at the moment and treat them to a generous dose of southern magic, featuring work from Paul John Nelson, Michael Thomas and Luke Van Aurich.Paul John Nelson - Images one to three.
Michael Thomas - Images four to six.
Luke Van Aurich - Images seven to nine.If you would like to see your work featured as part of SUN (DAE) DAY Submissions, please send a handful of jpegs, a link to your portfolio and a short description on your work or series to:        - submissions@theheavycollective.com
  • S U N ( D A E ) D A Y - S U B M I S S I O N S  Our inbox has been receiving an overwhelming amount of warm feelings from Melbourne lately, here’s us letting you know it’s mutual. Peel your eyes from whatever else it is you’re doing at the moment and treat them to a generous dose of southern magic, featuring work from Paul John Nelson, Michael Thomas and Luke Van Aurich.Paul John Nelson - Images one to three.
Michael Thomas - Images four to six.
Luke Van Aurich - Images seven to nine.If you would like to see your work featured as part of SUN (DAE) DAY Submissions, please send a handful of jpegs, a link to your portfolio and a short description on your work or series to:        - submissions@theheavycollective.com

S U N ( D A E ) D A Y - S U B M I S S I O N S  

Our inbox has been receiving an overwhelming amount of warm feelings from Melbourne lately, here’s us letting you know it’s mutual. Peel your eyes from whatever else it is you’re doing at the moment and treat them to a generous dose of southern magic, featuring work from Paul John Nelson, Michael Thomas and Luke Van Aurich.

Paul John Nelson - Images one to three.

Michael Thomas - Images four to six.

Luke Van Aurich - Images seven to nine.

If you would like to see your work featured as part of SUN (DAE) DAY Submissions, please send a handful of jpegs, a link to your portfolio and a short description on your work or series to:        

- submissions@theheavycollective.com


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Make a prediction for the future. 
Dolphins will rule the world. Your favorite painter? Matisse. Are you aware of any conspiracies? I have a few but I don’t know if it would be smart to share them here. If you had to align yourself with a leader in history, who would it be? Bob Hawke. Where do you think the most dangerous place on Earth is? Launceston. If your face was on the front of a restaurant what would be served inside? Beer and potatoes. 

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Ultimate camera? 
I’m more interested in the subject than the camera, but I wouldn’t say no to a Phase One 645 DF+ with a IQ280 back. Most used camera? 5D. What makes bad art bad? Trying too hard. What is sexy to you? Creativity. What was the last crime you witnessed? I was using my phone while stuck in traffic. It’s a bad habit. Pick an historic moment from the last hundred years to bring a camera to. The moon landing. What relationship advice do you have for us? Be kind. 

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Pick a field of science to be an expert within. 
There’s some pretty insidious diseases out there that I’d like to be able to cure. Who is your favorite hero of fiction? Bananaman. Have you recently been living by any life philosophy? Live in the moment. Describe A Cheap Thrill. Karaoke. Which Talent Would You Most Like To Have? Karaoke. What will baffle future generations about our day and age? The cult of celebrity.

Sean Fennessy - Website.

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  • S U N ( D A E ) D A Y - S U B M I S S I O N S This Sunday we feature the work of Canberra based photographer Jamie Hladky. To see more of Jamies’s work you can visit his website here. "Originally from Manchester, UK, I’ve lived and worked in London and Singapore, and been lucky enough to travel fairly widely. Living and travelling away from home for so long means developing a new set of visual understandings, and I’ve tried to do this through exploration and photography. I’m now based in Canberra, Australia, spending my time trying to see as much of this huge strange country as possible."If you would like to see your work featured as part of SUN (DAE) DAY Submissions, please send a handful of jpegs, a link to your portfolio and a short description on your work or series to:        - submissions@theheavycollective.com  
  • S U N ( D A E ) D A Y - S U B M I S S I O N S This Sunday we feature the work of Canberra based photographer Jamie Hladky. To see more of Jamies’s work you can visit his website here. "Originally from Manchester, UK, I’ve lived and worked in London and Singapore, and been lucky enough to travel fairly widely. Living and travelling away from home for so long means developing a new set of visual understandings, and I’ve tried to do this through exploration and photography. I’m now based in Canberra, Australia, spending my time trying to see as much of this huge strange country as possible."If you would like to see your work featured as part of SUN (DAE) DAY Submissions, please send a handful of jpegs, a link to your portfolio and a short description on your work or series to:        - submissions@theheavycollective.com  
  • S U N ( D A E ) D A Y - S U B M I S S I O N S This Sunday we feature the work of Canberra based photographer Jamie Hladky. To see more of Jamies’s work you can visit his website here. "Originally from Manchester, UK, I’ve lived and worked in London and Singapore, and been lucky enough to travel fairly widely. Living and travelling away from home for so long means developing a new set of visual understandings, and I’ve tried to do this through exploration and photography. I’m now based in Canberra, Australia, spending my time trying to see as much of this huge strange country as possible."If you would like to see your work featured as part of SUN (DAE) DAY Submissions, please send a handful of jpegs, a link to your portfolio and a short description on your work or series to:        - submissions@theheavycollective.com  
  • S U N ( D A E ) D A Y - S U B M I S S I O N S This Sunday we feature the work of Canberra based photographer Jamie Hladky. To see more of Jamies’s work you can visit his website here. "Originally from Manchester, UK, I’ve lived and worked in London and Singapore, and been lucky enough to travel fairly widely. Living and travelling away from home for so long means developing a new set of visual understandings, and I’ve tried to do this through exploration and photography. I’m now based in Canberra, Australia, spending my time trying to see as much of this huge strange country as possible."If you would like to see your work featured as part of SUN (DAE) DAY Submissions, please send a handful of jpegs, a link to your portfolio and a short description on your work or series to:        - submissions@theheavycollective.com  
  • S U N ( D A E ) D A Y - S U B M I S S I O N S This Sunday we feature the work of Canberra based photographer Jamie Hladky. To see more of Jamies’s work you can visit his website here. "Originally from Manchester, UK, I’ve lived and worked in London and Singapore, and been lucky enough to travel fairly widely. Living and travelling away from home for so long means developing a new set of visual understandings, and I’ve tried to do this through exploration and photography. I’m now based in Canberra, Australia, spending my time trying to see as much of this huge strange country as possible."If you would like to see your work featured as part of SUN (DAE) DAY Submissions, please send a handful of jpegs, a link to your portfolio and a short description on your work or series to:        - submissions@theheavycollective.com  
  • S U N ( D A E ) D A Y - S U B M I S S I O N S This Sunday we feature the work of Canberra based photographer Jamie Hladky. To see more of Jamies’s work you can visit his website here. "Originally from Manchester, UK, I’ve lived and worked in London and Singapore, and been lucky enough to travel fairly widely. Living and travelling away from home for so long means developing a new set of visual understandings, and I’ve tried to do this through exploration and photography. I’m now based in Canberra, Australia, spending my time trying to see as much of this huge strange country as possible."If you would like to see your work featured as part of SUN (DAE) DAY Submissions, please send a handful of jpegs, a link to your portfolio and a short description on your work or series to:        - submissions@theheavycollective.com  

S U N ( D A E ) D A Y - S U B M I S S I O N S 

This Sunday we feature the work of Canberra based photographer Jamie Hladky. To see more of Jamies’s work you can visit his website here

"Originally from Manchester, UK, I’ve lived and worked in London and Singapore, and been lucky enough to travel fairly widely. Living and travelling away from home for so long means developing a new set of visual understandings, and I’ve tried to do this through exploration and photography. I’m now based in Canberra, Australia, spending my time trying to see as much of this huge strange country as possible."

If you would like to see your work featured as part of SUN (DAE) DAY Submissions, please send a handful of jpegs, a link to your portfolio and a short description on your work or series to:        

- submissions@theheavycollective.com  

  • D I A N E - P H O T O G R A P I C - J O U R N A L : V O L - O N EMultifaceted creative outfit Diane, largely considered to be Melbourne’s most fashionable assemblage of skater bois, have pushed into the publishing game with the release of their first title Diane Photographic Journal Vol. One. Packed full of hijinks and skater on skater (camera) action, Volume One keeps in the tradition of the document all, nothing is sacred philosophy that has always paired so strongly with the culture, but is separated by it’s considered design and clever sequencing.  To grab yourself a copy or keep up to date with Diane happenings, visit their website here.
  • D I A N E - P H O T O G R A P I C - J O U R N A L : V O L - O N EMultifaceted creative outfit Diane, largely considered to be Melbourne’s most fashionable assemblage of skater bois, have pushed into the publishing game with the release of their first title Diane Photographic Journal Vol. One. Packed full of hijinks and skater on skater (camera) action, Volume One keeps in the tradition of the document all, nothing is sacred philosophy that has always paired so strongly with the culture, but is separated by it’s considered design and clever sequencing.  To grab yourself a copy or keep up to date with Diane happenings, visit their website here.
  • D I A N E - P H O T O G R A P I C - J O U R N A L : V O L - O N EMultifaceted creative outfit Diane, largely considered to be Melbourne’s most fashionable assemblage of skater bois, have pushed into the publishing game with the release of their first title Diane Photographic Journal Vol. One. Packed full of hijinks and skater on skater (camera) action, Volume One keeps in the tradition of the document all, nothing is sacred philosophy that has always paired so strongly with the culture, but is separated by it’s considered design and clever sequencing.  To grab yourself a copy or keep up to date with Diane happenings, visit their website here.

D I A N E - P H O T O G R A P I C - J O U R N A L : V O L - O N E

Multifaceted creative outfit Diane, largely considered to be Melbourne’s most fashionable assemblage of skater bois, have pushed into the publishing game with the release of their first title Diane Photographic Journal Vol. One. Packed full of hijinks and skater on skater (camera) action, Volume One keeps in the tradition of the document all, nothing is sacred philosophy that has always paired so strongly with the culture, but is separated by it’s considered design and clever sequencing.  

To grab yourself a copy or keep up to date with Diane happenings, visit their website here.


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What part of the planet would you like to explore? 
Top left corner of the continental US. I’ve been as far northwest as Minnesota and as far north as the bottom of Idaho, but missed the rest. Which seems like a wide beautiful space of fracking boomtowns, the forest from Endor and just a chunk of the country I’ve never seen. Also I’d like to make it to Alaska & Hawaii, which seem just otherworldly. I haven’t been out on the road in a bit, but I feel it’s only a matter of time until I get out to at least the top left of the country. Have you recently been living by any life philosophy? Ha-ha, yeah, funny enough I have been living the adult life I would have most wanted at 16. For the last year plus, I’ve been regularly shooting hardcore (punk) shows and indie (professional) wrestling, so I guess that’s a philosophy. I am still straight edge and vegetarian, but they’re not terribly recent life choices. Who would you most like to see embarrass themselves? I wish nothing but dignity for all people. But I am going to say Geoff DeCicco, my oldest friend. When we lived together in college, pretended to go out, only to wait in our bathroom for half an hour with his now wife, so he could jump out from behind our fridge in a Chewbacca costume and scare the shit out of me. I feel he has it coming. Name a design flaw in the human body. I kind of wish I could just output prints from pictures I made with my eyes. I am not sure which orifice I would like the prints to come out of, but it would make my life better. Describe the most important photo you’ve seen. I immediately went important to me, as opposed to all humanity, and even then I can’t really think of a specific picture. But I spent a lot of time as a kid with my little sisters making slide shows of my mother’s photographs from her life before she had us. Or Justine Demetrick’s fanzine Intermission, particularly issue #3. Both made me want to pick up a camera for the first time. 

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What is it that interests you about photography? 
I think it’s kind of the general thing that is interesting about all art. I don’t think I am alone in feeling that everything has been done and there is nothing truly surprising or different left to do. Until someone does it, and there is that wonder and amazement that there exists this completely different way of making art that I never even considered. What Was The Last Crime You Witnessed? Oh this year, I saw a guy get chased out of a cellphone store on the Fulton mall in downtown Brooklyn and then get caught and arrested by a bunch of cops. Before that, I saw some pretty bloody rioting in Varanasi, India, around 2000. Oh, and I got mugged twice after that in grad school, the last time at gunpoint, so I guess I witnessed that. If you had to align yourself with a leader in history, who would it be? I guess as a straight edge, vegetarian democrat, I’ll say Ian MacKaye, Ray Cappo, and Jimmy Carter. Also I can highly recommend the Carter Library in Atlanta. Carter is a much-underrated president. Also just saw New York Mayor Bill de Blasio enjoy the Bad Brains from the side of the stage at this year’s Afro Punk Fest, so I am pretty high on him right now. 

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