Committed to the Image: Contemporary Black Photographers

Overview

The ninety-five African American contemporary photographers represented in this volume have used their cameras as tools of social commentary and personal and artistic exploration, bearing witness to changes in the American experience over the past fifty years. These uncompromising, thought-provoking, often highly politicized images cover subjects such as the daily life of African Americans; the struggle of the Civil Rights movement; the history of Black musicianship; and the influence of African American art, ...
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Overview

The ninety-five African American contemporary photographers represented in this volume have used their cameras as tools of social commentary and personal and artistic exploration, bearing witness to changes in the American experience over the past fifty years. These uncompromising, thought-provoking, often highly politicized images cover subjects such as the daily life of African Americans; the struggle of the Civil Rights movement; the history of Black musicianship; and the influence of African American art, literature, and ideals of beauty on American society at large. Black artists, philosophers, writers, poets, musicians, politicians, and sports heroes are featured throughout. Some of the images address the most personal issues of philosophy and identity. The photographers featured, all working today and most of them at the height of their productivity, come from every region of the United States; together, their work represents a far-ranging exploration of contemporary African American identity.

Author Bio: Barbara Head Millstein is Curator of Photography at the Brooklyn Museum of Art and the organizer of the exhibition Committed to the Image. She is the co-author, with Sarah M. Lowe, of Consuelo Kanaga: An American Photographer.

Deba P. Patnaik is Professor of Culture and Interdisciplinary Studies and Director of Multicultural Affairs at Antioch College. A poet, translator, and critic, he has written widely about contemporary photography.

Clyde Taylor is a film historian, cultural critic, and essayist. He is professor in the Gallatin School of Individualized Study and in the African Studies program of New York University.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Accompanying an exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum of Art, this volume provides a remarkable sampling of the work of almost 100 contemporary African American photographers. Although each photographer is represented by only a few images, his or her unique vision and artistic techniques are readily evident. What these artists have in common is the use of the photographic medium to make powerful statements about the black experience in America, with results ranging from profoundly dignified portraits of both famous and ordinary people, to photojournalistic records of the ongoing struggle for justice and civil rights, and symbolic (and sometimes abstracted) images focusing on important social/racial issues. Preceding the catalog of images are several short essays that provide some historical background to black photography and underscore the unambiguously assertive content of the photographs. Short biographies of the 94 photographers are also provided. Highly recommended for any library with an interest in black studies, history of photography, or American culture. Eugene C. Burt, Data Arts, Seattle Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781858941233
  • Publisher: Merrell Publishers, LTD
  • Publication date: 2/28/2001
  • Pages: 240
  • Product dimensions: 9.88 (w) x 11.81 (h) x 1.01 (d)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 13, 2001

    Unknown Greatness

    I was glad to see so many great images. For some reason we see the same images and photographers over and over. I am so impress to see that there are so many Black Photographers with excellent skills. Onassis

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