'Solidarity', the Magnum's Square Print Sale, in collaboration with Vogue supports NAACP

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'Solidarity', the Magnum's Square Print Sale, in collaboration with Vogue supports NAACP
Raymond Depardon, American athletes Larry James, Lee Evans and Ron Freeman (left to right) on the winner’s podium for the 400-meter relay at the 1968 Olympic Games. Mexico City, Mexico. 1968.

NEW YORK, NY.- Solidarity, the July 2020 Square Print Sale, sees Magnum Photos supporting the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in collaboration with Vogue. The selection brings together over 100 images and texts by international visual artists. In a year of global societal and political upheaval that has seen the Black Lives Matter cause taken up around the world as well as hundreds of millions facing government restrictions on movement, this theme challenges participating photographers to reflect upon the power of togetherness in tumultuous times.

While acknowledging the daunting divisions and fault-lines running through society, the selection examines a simultaneous human yearning for commune and connection, aiming to explore the strength of both the individual and collective, as well as the interdependence of peoples around the world in the face of adversity and oppression. Everyday demonstrations of unity are shown in Harry Gruyaert’s photograph of fishermen working together in a storm, W. Eugene Smith’s 1951 portrait of midwife Maude Callen supporting her community, Hassan Hajjaj’s troupe of acrobats from Tangiers and the visual harmony of the multicoloured raincoats of cyclists in the rain captured by Stuart Franklin in Shanghai.

Some of the images in the curation explore moments in history where human bonds and the rallying of masses to a cause strove to bring about positive change. Several photographs depict the civil rights movement in the US and the ongoing fight for racial equality. Some of the images capture the early days of the movement — like Bob Henriques’ image of the crowds at the Prayer Pilgrimage for Freedom led by Martin Luther King, or Eve Arnold’s 1960 photograph of activists being trained not to react to bigoted provocation and Bruce Davidson’s image of protestors marching from Selma to Montgomery in 1965. Eli Reed’s chosen photograph from an anti-racism protest in Forsyth County, Georgia, was taken more than 20 years later. More recently; Miranda Barnes’ photograph of the Lorraine Motel to mark the 50th anniversary of Luther King’s assassination, Peter van Agtmael’s coverage of the fallout from the killing of George Floyd by police in Minneapolis, and Richie Shazam’s Black Trans Lives Matter March in Brooklyn remind viewers of the ongoing fight for racial justice in America.

Other photographs in the curation explore personal paths to understanding the power of solidarity through relationships with loved ones, strangers, or movements. From private acts of unity such as Alec Soth’s tender image of friendship between two blind young men, June Canedo de Souza holding her baby cousin’s hands and Newsha Tavakolian’s portrait of a millennial growing up in post-revolutionary Iran, to the public act of the raised fists of athletes Larry James, Lee Evans and Ron Freeman on the podium at the Mexico City Olympics in 1968 captured by Raymond Depardon.

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