The Radical Camera, which highlights some of the great photography associated with The Manhattan Photo League makes an important counterpoint to the Teenie Harris show.
The Radical Camera: New York's Photo League, 1936-1951
In 1936 a group of young, idealistic photographers, most of them Jewish, first-generation Americans, formed an organization in Manhattan called the Photo League. Their solidarity centered on a belief in the expressive power of the documentary photograph and on a progressive alliance in the 1930s of socialist ideas and art. The Radical Camera presents the contested path of the documentary photograph during a tumultuous period that spanned the New Deal reforms of the Depression, World War II, and the Cold War
The show included around 200 works by around 50 photographers.
Anyone who doubts that journalists, artists and photographers can change the world should see this show. In some ways, it was a bit chilling, given what we now know about the way their images of complex, vibrant communities like Harlem as troubled and damaged helped pave the way large scale urban renewal.
"Being a photographer is making people look at what I want them to look at" ... Ruth Orkin
The whole show has a great push and pull between photographs taken to make a point about poor working and living conditions, racism and social injustice and a gut level love and fascination with the street life of New York. (about 75% of the shots are of NY)
Check out the site which includes a number of videos and an amazing map of where some of the pictures were taken.
The Radical Camera: New York's Photo League
The Jewish Museum in New York
November 04, 2011 - March 25, 2012
Columbus Museum of Art
April 19, 2012 -Sept 9, 2012