Blog Posts by Holly Bailey

  • A master of color in black and white

    Famed for his color photographs of New York City, Saul Leiter's black and white work gets another look

    CLICK IMAGE for slideshow: Scarf, c.1948 -- Gelatin silver print. (Photograph by Saul Leiter)Click image for slideshow. Scarf, c.1948 — Gelatin silver print. (Photograph by Saul Leiter)

    When Saul Leiter died last November at the age of 89, he was largely unknown outside the art world — and even within, he had been overlooked until relatively recently. And that was fine by him.

    A prolific photographer who spent six decades roaming and documenting the streets of New York City, Leiter was a reclusive figure who took pictures simply because he loved to — not because he sought recognition or accolades. “Fame,” Leiter told a photography blog in 2009, “is of no use.”

    “A lot of artists are consumed by their legacies and what will happen, but he wasn’t,” recalled Margit Erb, Leiter’s longtime assistant and one of the few allowed into his private world. “To him, creating was like breathing. It was something he needed to do everyday.”

    And Leiter did, walking the city with a camera right up until the week he died, always in search of the beauty of the everyday. Along the way, he amassed a massive collection of work, hundreds of thousands of photos of New York dating back to the

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  • Thirteen years after 9/11, a slow rise from the ashes

    One World Trade Center is finally set to open, but many floors remain unrented

    One World Trade Center stands out on the New York City skyline on Sept. 10, 2014 (Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)One World Trade Center stands out on the New York City skyline on Sept. 10, 2014 (Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

    The view is among the most breathtaking in the world — floor-to-ceiling windows that offer a panorama of Manhattan and its surroundings 50 miles in every direction. The Empire State Building glistens to the north, the Statue of Liberty shimmers to the south. And on clear days, you can see as far as Princeton, N.J., to the west and Greenwich, Conn., to the east, from a vantage point so high that the cars below look like tiny ants.

    But when One World Trade Center finally opens later this year, many of the floors with the best views will be empty. Formerly known as the Freedom Tower, the 1,776-foot building, the tallest in the United States and third tallest in the world, has struggled to attract tenants. Just 58 percent of the nearly $4 billion office building has been leased so far — a smaller percentage than its developers had hoped ahead of November, when the building is set to formally open its doors.

    The Durst Corporation and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, co-owners

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  • San Francisco approves funding for Golden Gate bridge suicide barrier

    After a family tragedy, bridge official finally reaches a decades-long goal

    The north tower of the Golden Gate Bridge is seen surrounded by fog (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)The north tower of the Golden Gate Bridge is seen surrounded by fog (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
    SAN FRANCISCO — At moments, it glows like a pathway to heaven, floating almost dreamlike through the thick layer of fog that frequently blankets the city. Even on sunny days, the Golden Gate Bridge is a wonder, its graceful art deco towers gleaming a deep orange-red against the shimmering turquoise water of the San Francisco Bay.

    But when John Moylan looked at the bridge, he also saw a darker side to its majestic beauty. In the 27 years since he was first appointed to the 19-member board that oversees the Golden Gate, Moylan had also come to see the tragedy of the bridge. It came in the form of countless stories he’d heard from grieving families whose loved ones had leapt to their deaths from the iconic span.

    Moylan didn’t blame the bridge. But he did understand the anguish. He had lost a grandnephew to suicide. And the memory of that pain alone had convinced him that if something could be done to save lives, it should be done. So as the numbers of the dead ticked higher and higher — a

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  • The reporter O.J. talks to

    From Manson to the Simpson case, AP's Linda Deutsch has chronicled LA's most sensational trials

    Linda Deutsch, an AP reporter, comments on the visit of the jury to the home of music producer Phil Spector to view the crime scene Thursday, Aug. 9, 2007, in Alhambra, Calif. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, pool)Linda Deutsch, an AP reporter, comments on the visit of the jury to the home of music producer Phil Spector to view the crime scene Thursday, Aug. 9, 2007, in Alhambra, Calif. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, pool)

    His lawyers told him to keep his mouth shut, but that only seemed to make O.J. Simpson want to talk more.

    It was November 1995, a month after the Pro Football Hall of Famer had been found not guilty of the savage murders of his ex-wife Nicole and her friend Ronald Goldman.

    In theory, Simpson was a free man, back at his mansion on Rockingham Drive in west Los Angeles after 15 months in an isolated 9-foot by 7-foot cell at the county jail with its sliver of a window and thick concrete walls. Now he could wander through rooms at whim, go out to dinner and even leave town if he wanted to.

    The only thing Simpson shouldn’t do, his lawyers advised, was talk to the media. It was risky, since he was still the subject of a wrongful-death lawsuit filed by the Brown and Goldman families. There was also another incentive for staying quiet: He could eventually sell his story — an appealing prospect to Simpson, who was unemployed and on the hook for millions of dollars in legal fees.

    But the truth

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  • Revisiting the O.J. Simpson saga, 20 years later

    Key moments from one of the most sensational crime stories of the modern age

    Twenty years ago this week, O.J. Simpson’s ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend, Ronald Goldman, were found dead, stabbed to death in a bloody scene on the front steps of her condo in west Los Angeles. Simpson, a Pro Football Hall of Famer turned television and movie star, almost immediately was shrouded in suspicion, and thus began one of the most sensational crime stories of the modern age, one that still divides much of the nation.

    Every twist and turn of the case seemed almost as if it could have been scripted by Hollywood, from the slow-speed chase of a white Ford Bronco carrying an allegedly suicidal Simpson down the San Diego Freeway to the moment during his trial when the ex-football star struggled to fit his hands inside bloody gloves allegedly worn by his ex-wife’s killer. “If it doesn’t fit, you must acquit,” Simpson’s lawyer, Johnnie Cochran later intoned, a line that has lived on in pop culture infamy.

    Here are some of the memorable moments and images of the O.J.

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  • The O.J. Simpson saga, 20 years later

    What happened to the cast of characters from the 'Trial of the Century'

    It was a story that captivated the world: a beloved former football star accused of killing his glamorous ex-wife and her handsome friend in a grisly crime of passion.

    The O.J. Simpson saga was part Shakespearean tragedy and part trashy daytime soap opera, with an unlikely cast of characters and a juicy plot so strange and twisted that few dared to look away. Debating whether O.J. was guilty or not became a national pastime — encouraged by the fact that nearly every second of his trial was broadcast on television. And that debate was often divided along racial lines, underscoring the painful truth that blacks and whites continue to have drastically different views of justice in modern-day America.

    Twenty years later, there's no question that the so-called "Trial of the Century" was indeed that. It was America's first true reality TV show, altering pop culture and the media in a way that no other event has since. Without O.J., there probably would have been no wall-to-wall coverage of

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  • A year after a deadly tornado, Moore, Okla., rebounds, but storm fears remain

    CLICK IMAGE for slideshow: Moore, Okla. — Now and Then: Rebuilding continues one year later (Charlie Riedel/AP)

    MOORE, Okla. — Last May, Kristy Rushing was at work when she first heard the reports a tornado had developed just southwest of the home she shared with her husband, James, and their five foster kids.

    It wasn’t the first time her house had been in the path of deadly weather. A mile-wide tornado, one of the most destructive captured on record, missed their home by mere blocks in May 1999 — not long after they moved in. Four years later, in May 2003, another tornado hit, wiping out a neighborhood a mile north.

    “It missed us just by a hair those two times,” Rushing recalled.

    But on May 20, 2013, her family wasn’t so lucky. The monster tornado, nearly a mile and a half wide with winds in excess of 200 mph, took dead aim at her neighborhood, obliterating virtually everything in its path.

    Her home was reduced to splinters — 15 years of life mercilessly destroyed in an instant. But Rushing was one of the fortunate ones. Her husband, a UPS employee who worked the night shift so he could care

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  • Pounded by tornado, Alabama church shows its resilience

    Residents of tiny Kimberly take shelter

    KIMBERLY, Ala. — It was too dark to see it, but they knew it was coming. Twenty-five people gathered in the basement at Kimberly Church of God along Highway 31 here in a speck of a town just north of Birmingham to find safety from a tornado that was quickly bearing down on them Monday night.

    Storms had been pounding the tiny town for hours, hitting one after the other since the afternoon. It was typical springtime weather in a place where tornadoes haven’t exactly been strangers. A stray twister here and there had threatened Kimberly before, including during the deadly tornado outbreak of April 2011 when 238 people in Alabama were killed during a three-day stretch of storms.

    But none had ever taken a direct hit at Kimberly — until last night. Just before 10 p.m., people began flooding into the church’s basement recreation area, which sits right below the main chapel. It’s usually a space for potlucks or wedding receptions, but Monday night it was the town’s refuge, giving protection to

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  • Shaky ground in tornado alley

    Oklahoma has suddenly become earthquake country, and no one knows why

    Logan Devereaux, 5, walks past bricks that fell from a home in Sparks, Okla., after a Nov. 2011 earthquake (Sue Ogrocki/AP)
    GUTHRIE, Okla. — The shaking came in the dead of the night on a recent Wednesday morning, vibrations so intense that they startled Faye Sayre out of a deep sleep. Her bed was lurching up and down and back and forth — and Sayre, in her drowsiness, initially thought it was Gunner, her 180-pound English mastiff puppy, leaping on her mattress as if it were a doggie trampoline.

    “I thought, ‘Why is my dog jumping in my bed?’” Sayre recalled. “The bed was really rocking. ... And she doesn’t do that. She’s not excitable like that. She’s a very calm dog.”

    But as Sayre sat up to figure out what was happening, she noticed Gunner was sprawled in her usual spot on the floor next to her bed. The dog was looking up at her quizzically, and Sayre suddenly realized it wasn’t just her bed that was moving. The entire room was shaking.

    “Here we go again,” Sayre thought.

    It was an earthquake — one of the more than 150 quakes measured at magnitudes of 2.5 or higher on the Richter scale that have hit Oklahoma

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  • The mystery of Tamerlan Tsarnaev's widow

    A year after the Boston attacks, questions remain about what Katherine Russell knew and who she really is

    Katherine Russell, wife of Tamerlan Tsarnaev, leaving the house where he lived on Norfolk street in Cambridge on Apr. 20, 2013, the day after Tsarnaev, was killed in a shootout with police. (William Farrington/Polaris)
    NORTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. — The unmarked police cars that used to be parked down the block are gone. So are the satellite trucks. But every few weeks, a paparazzo turns up, training a long lens on a two-story ranch-style home that sits on a quiet, wooded cul-de-sac here, hoping to land the money shot of the widow of Tamerlan Tsarnaev, the alleged mastermind of the Boston Marathon bombings.

    That’s why, neighbors believe, they don’t see Katherine Russell outside anymore — or her parents or two younger sisters. Not even on the warm days, when the family used to sit in lawn chairs smiling and laughing as Russell and Tsarnaev’s 3-year-old daughter, Zahara, happily scampered through the open backyard.

    When a tabloid ran photos of one of those backyard jaunts last summer, family members retreated inside and have rarely been seen by the neighbors since. A space that had once felt so open and free was suddenly a prison where there was no privacy from the prying eyes of a world curious about how a

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