These arts images are drawn from “Identity and Affirmation: Postwar African-American Photography,” an exhibition of 125 images produced by Los Angeles African-American photographers during the postwar years from 1945 to 1980. The marvelous show, now on at Cal State Northridge, also includes social and political photographs. It’s part of the Getty’s “Pacific Standard Time” survey of post-war L.A. creative undertaking.
They’re a mere smattering of the nearly 850,000 images that comprise the archives of the Institute for Arts and Media at Cal State Northridge, the nation’s largest collection of work by African-American photographers,. The exhibition offers insight into the era, documenting the struggle for equal rights and celebrating the many contributions to cultural and civic life made by African Americans.
The exhibition also explores the development of African-American identity in Los Angeles.
Twelve photographers are represented in the show, including Harry Adams, Roland Charles, Guy Crowder, Jack Davis, Bob Douglas, Maxie Floyd, Alex Green, Calvin Hicks, James Jeffrey, Dan Martin, Willie Middlebrook and Charles Williams. Most of the photographers worked for news services and the black press—such as the California Eagle, Los Angeles Sentinel, Jet and Ebony—chronicling politicians, important events and celebrities in a photo-journalistic style.
Identity and Affirmation: Postwar African-American Photograph | Cal State Northridge art galleries | thru Dec 10