Double Exposure is a major new series based on the remarkable photography collection supporting the Earl W. and Amanda Stafford Center for African American Media Arts at the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC). From daguerreotype portraits taken before the Civil War to twenty-first century digital prints, this series is a striking visual record of key historical events, cultural touchstones, and private and communal moments that helps to illuminate African American life.
In addition to featuring fifty photographs from a broad range of African American experiences, each thematic volume includes introductions by some of the leading historians, activists, photographers, and writers of our times. Many of the images in the series are by famous photographers such as Spider Martin, Gordon Parks, Ernest C. Withers, Wayne F. Miller, and Henri Cartier-Bresson. There are also iconic images, such as McPherson & Oliver's Gordon under Medical Inspection (circa 1867), and Charles Moore's photographs of the 1963 Birmingham Children's Crusade. These take their place next to unfamiliar or recently discovered images, including work by Henry Clay Anderson of everyday life in the black community in Greenville (MS), during the height of the Jim Crow segregation laws.
Volume 1: Through the African American Lens is an introduction to the photography collection, revealing the ways in which African Americans have used activism, community, and culture to fight for social justice and create a better life.
Aligned to Common Core Standards
Deborah Willis is an art photographer and university professor and chair at the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University.
FOREWORD by Lonnie G. Bunch III
SELF-REPRESENTATION AND HOPE: THE POWER OF THE PICTURE by Rhea L. Combs
AMERICA’S LENS by Deborah Willis
Natasha Trethewey is an American poet. Author of five books of poetry, she was appointed the United States Poet Laureate in 2012-2013. Winner of numerous awards including a Pulitzer Prize in Poetry (2006), the Cave Canem Poetry Prize, a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Grolier Poetry Prize, and a Pushcart Prize. Trethewey is also a Professor of English and Creative Writing at Emory University, where she directs the Creative Writing Program.
Kinshasha Holman Conwill is the deputy director of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture. She was director of The Studio Museum in Harlem from 1988 to 1999, served as assistant exhibit coordinator for the Museum of the American Indian in New York City and Coordinator of Activities for the Frank Lloyd Wright Hollyhock House. Conwill writes on art, museums, and cultural policy and is a frequent lecturer and panelist at colleges, universities, conferences, and museums.
"Compelling and historic"Maurice Berger,The New York Times, Lens blog
"Iconic photographs from African American history"Maya Rhodan, TIME
"Compact and irresistible" "An elegant and defining volume”Booklist
"A significant new series of books"Conor Risch, Photo District News
"A superb peek at the treasures of the museum"Noella Ballenger, Apogee Photo Magazine
"Compelling and historic"—Maurice Berger,The New York Times, Lens blog
"Iconic photographs from African American history"—Maya Rhodan, TIME
"Compact and irresistible" "An elegant and defining volume”—Booklist
"A significant new series of books"—Conor Risch, Photo District News
"A superb peek at the treasures of the museum"–Noella Ballenger, Apogee Photo Magazine