Aperture 223 - Summer 2016

Vision & Justice

Addresses the role of photography in the African American experience, guest edited by Sarah Lewis, distinguished author and art historian.

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Issue Details

Guest edited by Sarah Elizabeth Lewis, Vision & Justice addresses the role of photography in the African American experience.

This award-winning issue of Aperture magazine was released in summer 2016, in a political moment defined by the close of the Obama era and the steady rise of #BlackLivesMatter activism. As a racial reckoning continues in the United States, this powerful issue remains an essential resource for understanding the role of art in the movement for equity and social justice.

Rooted in the prescient thinking of Frederick Douglass, and his argument that social progress requires pictures, “Vision & Justice” includes a wide span of photographic projects by such luminaries as Lyle Ashton Harris, Sally Mann, Jamel Shabazz, Lorna Simpson, Carrie Mae Weems, and Deborah Willis, as well as the brilliant voices of a younger generation―Devin Allen, Awol Erizku, LaToya Ruby Frazier, Deana Lawson, and Hank Willis Thomas, among many others. Their portfolios are complemented by essays from some of the most influential voices in American culture, including contributions by celebrated writers, historians, and artists such as Vince Aletti, Teju Cole, Ava DuVernay, Henry Louis Gates Jr., Margo Jefferson, Wynton Marsalis, and Claudia Rankine.

“Vision & Justice” features two covers. This issue comes with an image by Awol Erizku, Untitled (Forces of Nature #1), 2014.
Format: Paperback / softback
Number of pages: 128
Publication date: 2016-04-26
Measurements: 9.25 x 12 x 0.6 inches
ISBN: 9781597114103

Table Of Contents


Guest Editor’s Note
Sarah Lewis

Collectors: The Jazz Musicians
Contributions by Wynton Marsalis, Ingrid Monson, Alicia Hall Moran, Jason Moran, and Somi

By Hank Willis Thomas


Frederick Douglass’s Camera Obscura
By Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

The Black Photographers Annual
By Carla Williams

Black Lives, Silver Screen
Ava DuVernay and Bradford Young in Conversation

Love Visual: A Conversation with Haile Gerima
By Sarah Lewis and Dagmawi Woubshet

Picturing Obama
By Maurice Berger

Carrie Mae Weems: Around the Kitchen Table
Reflections by Dawoud Bey, Jennifer Blessing, Katori Hall, Robin Kelsey, and Salamishah Tillet


Awol Erizku
Introduction by Steven Nelson

Toyin Ojih Odutola
Introduction by Claudia Rankine

Lorna Simpson
Introduction by Margo Jefferson

Annie Leibovitz
Introduction by Nell Painter

Deborah Willis
Introduction by Cheryl Finley

Sally Mann
Introduction by John Stauffer

Jamel Shabazz
Introduction by Khalil Gibran Muhammad

Devin Allen
Introduction by Aaron Bryant

Leslie Hewitt
Introduction by Rujeko Hockley

Lyle Ashton Harris
Introduction by Vince Aletti

Radcliffe Roye
Introduction by Garnette Cadogan

LaToya Ruby Frazier
Introduction by Teju Cole

Dawoud Bey
Introduction by Leigh Raiford

Deana Lawson
Introduction by Thomas J. Lax


Object Lessons
Thelma Golden on James VanDerZee, Christmas Morning, 1933

Online Exclusives

Mark Bradford’s Pride of Place
By Antwaun Sargent

Prison Portraits
By Nicole R. Fleetwood

Sheila Pree Bright in Conversation with Naima J. Keith

Deana Lawson and Nikki A. Greene in Conversation about the Emanuel 9

dream hampton in Conversation with Geena Rocero

Jamel Shabazz in Conversation with Michaela Angela Davis

The People’s Justice Murals
By Emily Raboteau

Richard Avedon and James Baldwin
By Brian Wallis

3 Reflections on Cinema and Archives
Catherine Gund, Shola Lynch, and Franklin Leonard

Renée Mussai in Conversation with Victor Peterson II

Ming Smith and the Kamoinge Workshop
By LeRonn P. Brooks

She Walked in Beauty
By Susan Fales-Hill

Student Reflections

Don’t Touch Our Hair
By Jeneé Osterheldt

Racial Innocence in Postwar America
By Maia Silber

Separate Cars on the Open Road
By Ian Askew

Envisioning the Right to Vote
By Jonathan Karp

The Cotton Bowl and the Super Bowl
By Eli Wilson Pelton

In California, Trees as Witness and Living Memorial
By Elizabeth Huber

Framing Justice
Nathan Cummings, Josiah Corbus, Ted Waechter, Christopher Chow, and Larisa Owusu

Art and Activism in a Contested Democracy
Taiyo Na, Jonathan Michael Square, Carmen Hermo, Nina Crews, Valentine Umansky

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