Miller Gallery joins the nationwide celebration of Woodstock’s 40th birthday with an
exhibition of photographs by Burk Uzzle, the foremost photographer of
arguably the most peaceful assemblage of over 300,000 persons ever.
Approximately 25 vintage, modern and color prints from the Woodstock
Music and Arts Festival, as it originally was promoted, will be shown.
Burk Uzzle shot the festival from the
vantage point of a participant. In one particularly telling photograph,
a sea of humanity as dense as a carpet of wildflowers in a meadow spills
over a hillside; in another, a young hippie couple standing in a tender
embrace under a grandmother’s quilt became the icon of a generation.
Rather than document the music, Uzzle chose to focus on details of
living, existence, and enjoyment over that three day period. In so
doing, he captured the spirit of the festival and ultimately an era.
It has been 40 years
since the peace and love generation descended in a greater mass than
ever imagined on Yasgur’s farm in upstate
New York. The original festival
ballooned to way more folks than the sleepy towns of Middletown or Woodstock could accommodate, so Max Yasgur very
generously gave his hillside over to the organizers in what would become
surely the most celebrated festival of its kind. At its conclusion, Woodstock became recognized
as one of the most significant events in the history of rock music, but
its effect was even grander. In an America rife with racial tension and at war in
Vietnam, Woodstock defined the
culture of a generation, a message of hope for a brighter and more
Watch Burk Uzzle as he discusses his Woodstock experiences on NBC
Nightly News with Brian Williams