April 25 – November 3, 2019

CENTURY features thirty-eight new photographs added to the Harn’s permanent collection in the last two years. They are by celebrated photographers such as Lewis Hine, André Kertész, Laura Gilpin, Walker Evans, Helen Levitt, Eudora Welty, W. Eugene Smith, Larry Burrows and Danny Lyon. Laid out chronologically, the exhibition, when viewed as a whole, becomes a kind of elegy to the last one hundred years. Each image carries the photographer’s urgency to capture specific moments (sometimes at great risk) for us, the viewers. Such hard-won efforts demand our careful looking at the beautiful and difficult visual warp and weft of eras and events that inspire or warn. A few of these images even changed the course of history.

To help with our looking, CENTURY is accompanied by wall quotes from the celebrated British author, artist and activist, John Berger (1926-2017). Passionately engaged in painting, art criticism, poetry, and as writer and host of "Ways of Seeing" (a groundbreaking BBC series), Berger wanted to empower his viewers by asking questions, or asserting thoughtful looking, not just at art but at the world: “Looking is a political act, and a love affair with the visible.”

This exhibition is made possible by the Harn Curator of Photography Endowment and the Harn Annual Fund.

Image credits
Slide 1
Left: Walker Evans, "Fish Market Near Birmingham, Alabama," negative: 1936, print: 1971, gelatin silver print, museum purchase, funds provided by the David A. Cofrin Acquisition Endowment, and the Caroline Julier and James G. Richardson Acquisition Fund
Right: Lori Nix and Kathleen Gerber, "Winter Monument," 2017, archival pigment print, museum purchase, funds provided by The Caroline Julier and James G. Richardson Acquisition Fund
Slide 2
Left: Gertrude Käsebier, "Gertrude O’Malley and her Son Charles on the Porch," 1900, platinum print, museum purchase with funds provided by the David A. Cofrin Art Acquisition Endowment
Right: André Kertész, "Celebration in Montparnasse after the First Futurist Ballet," 1929, gelatin silver, gift of Lori and Kenneth Polin Family