THROUGH A LENS DARKLY: Black Photographers and the Emergence of a People


Whenever there’s something worth posting, spreading the word & keeping your head in the loop seems to be the ticket. This one particular piece is personal due to my obvious love for digital photography. The aim here is simply to inspire, motivate & move….

20150202084302-THROUGHLENSD_Ad_FA Inspired by Deborah Willis’s book, Reflections in Black, THROUGH A LENS DARKLY (Willis is also a co-producer) casts a broad net that begins with filmmaker Thomas Allen Harris’s family album. It considers the difference between black photographers who use the camera to define themselves, their people, and their culture and some white photographers who, historically, have demeaned African-Americans through racist imagery. The film embraces both historical material (African-Americans who were slaves, who fought in the Civil War, were victims of lynchings, or were pivotal in the Civil Rights Movement) and contemporary images made by such luminaries as Roy DeCarava, Gordon Parks, and Carrie Mae Weems. The film is a cornucopia of Americana that reveals deeply disturbing truths about the history of race relations while expressing joyous, life-affirming sentiments about the ability of artists and amateurs alike to assert their identity through the photographic lens.Thomas Allen Harris, director of THROUGH A LENS DARKLY: BLACK PH “Mr. Harris’s film is a family memoir, a tribute to unsungartists and a lyrical, at times, heartbroken, meditation on imagery and identity. The film is always absorbing to watch, but only once it’s over do you begin to grasp the extent of its ambitions, and just how much it has done within a packed, compact hour and half… Mr. Harris marshals an impressive collection of scholars, artists and photojournalists to help us understand what we see… He is a wise and passionate guide to an inexhaustibly fascinating subject.”  – A.O. Scott, The New York Times Using this medium as a way to spread inspiring stories brings a great sense of satisfaction. Even if only one person decided to take a peep, that’s another one moved with the human spirit…. That’s right!.. Peace!…with 2 fingers;)

5 responses »

  1. Horrifying to see. I wanted to turn it off again and again but felt that I had to face what was done in the past. I don’t believe anything can make up for what was done…not ever. All we can do is stand together and FIGHT what’s happening now. Hatred and violence are used to keep people from accessing their own personal power. It’s used to keep the status quo in place, the powerful in positions of power. This post delivers its powerful message with intelligence and truth. It’s so very important. Photographs speak, where words fail. Love and peace and hands held tightly for a better world.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Reblogged this on Rethinking Life and commented:
    This difficult to watch. And what are we doing about it NOW. We need to fight racism because it’s still here, still destroying lives through slavery and poverty. We can’t forget, we can’t act as if it’s not still happening. Be aware and speak out. Fight back. Stand up and be counted.


  3. The poem that inspired me to start my blog ‘Life in Black and White’, was one I wrote when I was a young girl. Human prejudice has always shaken me to the core and is just another example of ignorance and hate! Beautifully done document, thank you


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