Friday, January 28, 2011

UMass Amherst to work with Springfield youth on photography exhibit.

The University Gallery will show the exhibition Intersections Intersected: The Photographs of David Goldblatt, and a series of events related to the works by David Goldblatt, the eminent South African photographer of our time. His photographs capture the social and moral value systems that governed the tumultuous history of his country’s segregationist policies and continue to influence its changing political landscape. As both citizen and photographer, he was witness to apartheid’s infiltration into every aspect of South African life. The exhibition includes 150 photographs by Goldblatt that focus on South Africa’s human landscape in the apartheid and post-apartheid eras. Very precise captions written by the artist accompany each photo in order to convey context and critical information about the image. His photos do not look at the large events or the public face of violence; rather they focus on the world of ordinary people and the minutiae of everyday life, illuminating the depth of injustice and the character of the people who imposed it and who struggled against it.

In the spirit of David Goldblatt's work, looking at the world of ordinary people and the everyday life, the University Gallery will engage Springfield youth to document their own world and their surroundings, investigating with open eyes the depth of injustice in their environment. Like Goldblatt, they would accompany their images with texts. The collective composition of images and texts will make a powerful statement of persistent racial inequality, the dignity of people, and will make tangible the effects of societal injustice on the individual. Furthermore, it will sharpen the eyes of participants to their surroundings and give them a new voice.

The students photographs will be displayed at an exhibit in the end of February.