Guide to the Emile Waagenaar Photoprints of Cajun Musicians : digital prints
Digitized Content

Summary
Collection ID:
NMAH.AC.1150
Creators:
Waagenaar, Emile
Dates:
1980-2008
Languages:
English
Collection is in English.
Physical Description:
0.5 Cubic feet
64 items
Repository:
Environmental portraits of Cajun musicians: 64 inkjet photographic prints, 1980-2008, some in black-and-white and others in color.

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
Environmental portraits of Cajun musicians, often taken in their homes, usually showing them with their instruments, typically accordions, violins, and guitars. Exterior images sometimes include automobiles. The collection consists of 64 inkjet photographic prints, 297 x 420 mm. (12" x 16-3/4"), some in black-and-white and others in color. They are beautifully crafted and include a wealth of detail. They are basically straightforward environmental portraits, and although the subjects are rendered with dignity, sometimes unusual, quirky aspects of some subjects' personalities, including seemingly incongruous details, also are on display in whimsical pictures imbued with gentle humor. This group of prints is in excellent, new condition. Waagenaar's pictures are sharp, clear, and demonstrate a sympathetic, warm attitude toward his subjects.bPrints are signed in pencil on verso. Printed on Hahnemule Fine Art Inkjet Paper.

Arrangement
Arrangement
The collection is arranged into one series.

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
Emile Waagenaar lives in the Netherlands, where he works as a commercial photographer. He is an enthusiastic aficionado of Cajun music and because he loves the music, which he discovered in the 1970s, in 1982 he began photographing musicians who play this regional style in New Orleans and elsewhere in Louisiana, Texas, etc. Over the years, at his own expense, he has made many trips from his home to the United States in order to seek out, befriend, and photograph Cajun musicians with their instruments—in their homes, businesses, and concert environments in the United States. Since he fears that this music is always at risk of disappearing as older musicians die and other popular music styles of the moment attract audiences away from traditional forms and styles, he has a missionary spirit in engaging in this project. He hopes not only to preserve visual records of some of the most important musicians and their environments, but to engender interest in Cajun music on the part of those who view his photographs. This project seems is one to which he devotes considerable time and passion and is the most personal of his photographic projects because it is self-assigned rather than deriving from economic necessity. His enthusiasm for this style of music led him to form his own Cajun band in the Netherlands. Many of his images can be viewed on his web site at http://www.emilecajun.web-log.nl/.
Waagenaar has had a number of exhibitions of his work on Cajun musicians in Europe and the United States, including the solo exhibit, "La Joie de la Musique," Sept. 9-Nov. 25, 2006 (La Musées de Lafayette, Louisiana). His work is discussed and critiqued by Johan von Gurp in the catalog Schatten van Breda's Museum (Breda, Netherlands, 2003).
Waagenaar's aims are both aesthetic and historical. He has tried to document the most important and innovative musicians, first among the generation of musicians who were the founders of Cajun music in the beginning of the 20th century. He writes, "After that I think it is important to have the second, third and fourth generation of these musicians. Every generation gives…Cajun music another drive, but the people I want to photograph must…respect the old traditional style and stay close to that. These days I use the Internet to find new musicians, but the best [way to] locate these people is talking with the musicians I already know…when I am in Louisiana. Mostly I give them a phone call and explain my intentions."

Administration
Processing Information
Collection processed by David Haberstich.
Author
David Haberstich
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Donated by Emile Waagenaar.The photographer had these prints made specifically for this gift.

Using the Collection
Preferred Citation
Emile Waagenaar Photoprints of Cajun Musicians, Archives Center, National Museum of American History. Gift of the artist. Copyright held by the artist.
Conditions Governing Use
Emile Waagenaar retains copyright. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.
Conditions Governing Access
Collection is open for research.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Inkjet prints Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Photographs -- Digital prints -- 20th century Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Photographs -- Digital prints -- 21st century Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Digital images Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Louisiana Place Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Automobiles Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Dwellings -- Louisiana Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Guitars Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Musicians Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Cajun music -- Louisiana Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Violin Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Accordion Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid

Repository Contact
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
P.O. Box 37012
Suite 1100, MRC 601
Washington, D.C. 20013-7012
archivescenter@si.edu
http://americanhistory.si.edu/archives