Bruce Davidson, one of America’s most influential contemporary photographers, returns to Maine Media Workshops Saturday, Aug. 21. The day’s events will begin 2 p.m. in the Rockport Opera House, 6 Central St., with Davidson’s lecture, presentation and “Outside Inside” book signing. The afternoon will conclude with a gallery reception just down the street at the Maine Media Gallery.

“Outside Inside,” a three-volume set, contains more than 800 seen and unseen photographs selected from Davidson’s private archives including seminal bodies of work such as Brooklyn Gang; East 100th Street; Time of Change: Civil Rights Photographs, 1961-1965; Subway; and Circus. Noted for emotionally connecting with his subjects, Davidson enters into their communities and documents those within.

As Davidson explains in his book, “I view my work as a series. I often find myself as an outsider on the inside, discovering beauty and meaning in the most desperate of situations.”

In company with the influences and masters of the medium Henri Cartier-Bresson, W. Eugene Smith, Robert Frank, Diane Arbus and Arnold Newman, Davidson has spent more than 50 years photographing people, cultures and nuances. In 1966, he received the first photography grant ever awarded by the National Endowment for the Arts. Other top awards given to Davidson are a Guggenheim Fellowship, the American Film Festival’s Critics’ Award as well as its First Prize in Fiction award, the Lucie Award for Outstanding Achievement in Documentary Photography and the National Arts Club Gold Medal Visual Arts Award given in 2007.

“Outside Inside: Celebrating over 50 years of Bruce Davidson, Master of Photography” runs through Oct. 1 at Maine Media Gallery, on the first floor of the Shepherd Building, 18 Central St. The gallery will be open weekdays from 10 a.m. to noon and 2 to 5 p.m. plus 7 to 8 p.m. Mondays and Tuesdays. For more information, visit mainemedia.edu; call 236-8581; or send e-mail to info@theworkshops.com.

VillageSoup Art/Entertainment Editor Dagney Ernest can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by e-mail to dernest@villagesoup.com.