Dawoud Bey ’93MFA currently has an exhibition called Dawoud Bey: Harlem, U.S.A at the African American Museum of Philadelphia (AAMP). Raised in Queens, Bey was inspired to create this collection by his family’s roots in Harlem. According to the museum’s website, “All these photographs are sensitively composed and radiate an emphasis on the calm and dignity that would become hallmarks of Bey’s approach. Like August Sander, Bey wanted to show the “types” of Harlem’s residents: the barber, the patrician, the church ladies, the hip youth. He was searching for a way to combine the specificity of photography, which only knows how to record details, with the diversity of Harlem, a neighborhood as varied as any in the country. And he wanted to do this without courting stereotypes.”
In its coverage of the exhibition, the Philadelphia Weekly wrote, “It’s hard to understate the social and historical significance of these photos.” Dawoud Bey: Harlem, U.S.A will be featured at the museum until April 2nd. AAMP is open Thursday-Saturday from 10 AM – 5 PM and on Sunday from 12 PM – 5 PM.