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CENTURY features thirty-eight new photographs added to the Harn’s permanent collection in the last two years. They are by celebrated photographers such as Lewis Hine, André Kertész, Laura Gilpin, Walker Evans, Helen Levitt, Eudora Welty, W. Eugene Smith, Larry Burrows and Danny Lyon. Laid out chronologically, the exhibition, when viewed as a whole, becomes a kind of elegy to the last one hundred years. Each image carries the photographer’s urgency to capture specific moments (sometimes at great risk) for us, the viewers. Such hard-won efforts demand our careful looking at the beautiful and difficult visual warp and weft of eras and events that inspire or warn. A few of these images even changed the course of history.
To help with our looking, CENTURY is accompanied by wall quotes from the celebrated British author, artist and activist, John Berger (1926-2017). Passionately engaged in painting, art criticism, poetry, and as writer and host of "Ways of Seeing" (a groundbreaking BBC series), Berger wanted to empower his viewers by asking questions, or asserting thoughtful looking, not just at art but at the world: “Looking is a political act, and a love affair with the visible.”