P r o t e s t !
“Photography cannot change the world but it can show the world, especially when it changes”
The Main Image of this exhibit by Marc Riboud 1967
Last night at Milk ( June 20th 2017), we had a look through the Magnum’s archive at photographs of protest from the 1930s to the present day. These images presented to the audience covered the early days of segregation, through protests and rallies, as well as individual’s behaviors that would help lead to empowerment. One piece that touch me, was the educating of illiterate African Americans to make them find the inner strength to go vote.
These images to me where creative works that was captured by activists and social movements. There was also contemporary and historical images for the audience to take in with their glass of wine. The Milk gallery presented demonstrations and acts of civil disobedience via images that documented signs, banners, and posters, used to convey the cause or message of the struggle and the time.
“Sometimes change doesn’t occur immediately or directly but I am in absolutely no doubt that photography has in the past and will in the future serve to initiate change.” – Stuart Franklin—Magnum Photo
The impact of a protest isn’t always easily to understand. However, some social up rising have resulted in immediate change. What any good protest should do and what I felt from viewing this exhibition was the spread of popular consciousness and awareness. Sadly, as we know not all protest and social strain make any substantial dent on the status quo. But there’s no doubt that the freedom to express one’s beliefs in a peaceful manner, without fear, is a necessary part of democracy. Now More Than Ever!!!
The aim of the protest photography at the showcase, was to tell the story of outrage and injustice through the emotion of the participants via film. It is so easy to be an observer and not standing and marching with demonstrators.
As a photographer myself, I felt as if the photographer(s) sympathized and understood with the protesters in some way. I mean how else do you tell the mass public of protest and protesters if you yourself are blind to the injustice.
Above Magnum Photography Credit:
Michael Christopher Brown