O. WINSTON LINK (American, 1914 – 2001)

Born in 1914, O. Winston Link was educated at the Polytechnic Institute (now Polytechnic University) in Brooklyn, where he received a BS in Civil Engineering and graduated in 1937.  Soon after graduating, Link took a position as a photographer for Carl Byoir and Associates where he made public relations photographs for clients such as Freeport Sulpher Company, the State of Louisiana, B.F. Goodrich Tire Company and Libby-Owens-Ford Glass Company. 

From 1942 to 1945, Link worked as a photographer and researcher for the Office of Scientific Research and Development at Columbia University, where he worked on the development of the Magnetic Airborne Detector, a World War II device used to detect submarines from aircraft flying overhead. In 1946, Link began working as an independent photographer for clients such as Ethyl Corporation, Freeport Sulpher Company, American Cyanamid, American Petroleum Institute, Texaco, The New York Times and the Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority.

Probably his most famous body of work, Link's railroad photographs document the building of the Norfolk and Western Railway between 1955 and 1960.  These photographs are recognized for their precise placement of locomotives, some in almost complete darkness and some traveling at speeds up to sixty miles per hour.  Link expanded the scope of the project by documenting life along the tracks of the steam locomotive, often making the locomotive all but invisible. Link received an Honorary Fellowship from The Royal Photographic Society of Great Britain in 1997.

Selected Collections:

Akron Art Museum, Akron, Ohio

The Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois

High Museum of Art, Atlanta, Georgia

International Center of Photography, New York, New York

Joslyn Art Museum, Omaha, Nebraska

Madison Art Center, Madison, Wisconsin

Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, New York

Milwaukee Art Museum, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Minneapolis, Minnesota

Museum of Modern Art, New York, New York

New Orleans Museum of Art, New Orleans, Louisiana

Norfolk Southern Corporation, Norfolk, Virginia

San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, California

Victoria and Albert Museum, London, England