Photojournalist Rowland Scherman captured the events that shaped the Baby Boomer generation

Nov 19, 2013


Tuesday, Nov. 19 at 8 p.m. on WV PBS

Famed LIFE photojournalist Rowland Scherman and his Nikon and Leica cameras bore witness to some of the most transformational events of the 1960s. 

His now-iconic images — just some of the hundreds of thousands taken over the course of his career — captured the March on Washington, the Newport Folk Festival, the first Beatles concert in the United States, the burial of the Apollo I astronauts at Arlington National Cemetery, Robert F. Kennedy ill-fated presidential campaign, Woodstock, and other seminal events of the era. These events shaped a generation of Baby Boomers, and would reverberate in American politics and culture for decades to come.

Eye on the Sixties: The Iconic Photography of Rowland Scherman coincides with the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of three pivotal moments in modern American history — the March on Washington, John F. Kennedy’s assassination, and the arrival of The Beatles. This compelling feature-length documentary, already a critical success on the festival circuit, will premiere on WV PBS.2 on Tuesday, Nov. 19 at 8 p.m.

At the sites of some of his most famous photos, Scherman reveals candid and insightful anecdotes from his storied career, reflects on his life and his legacy, muses about his chosen medium’s relevance in the digital age, as well as the inevitable passage of time. Scherman also shares seldom-seen images of politicians and celebrities of the 1960s, including President Lyndon Johnson, Eunice Shriver and her first experiment of The Special Olympics, folk sensations Joni Mitchell and Judy Collins, tennis great Arthur Ashe at the dawn of his career, TV journalism pioneer Barbara Walters, and JFK with the very first Peace Corps volunteers, taken during Scherman’s service as the agency’s first photographer.

In present-day interviews, Collins (the subject of Scherman's 1969 LIFE essay), and former LIFE Washington Bureau Chief Richard B. Stolley share their thoughts on Scherman and his enduring work.

Produced and directed by noted filmmaker Chris Szwedo, Eye on the Sixties is an intimate portrait of a free-spirited, creative, driven and passionate artist. It is more than a collection of one man's photographs; it is a photo album of American history. Says Szwedo, "The goal of the film all along was to produce a work that would honor Rowland and his talent, his journey, and to provide another valid context for that amazing decade.  Out of it, we also managed to create a timeless love letter to the Baby Boomer Generation, as well as a reminder that regardless of changing photo technology, the human eye is still the best piece of equipment that we’ll ever have.”

To learn more about Rowland Scherman, visit www.rowlandscherman.com.