Collection Artwork
Casket in the Parade
August 28, 1963
gelatin silver print
Associated Press
image size: 6 5/8 x 9 1/8 in.
frame size: 14 1/4 x 15 7/8 x 1 1/4 in.
The Jack Shear Collection of Photography at the Tang Teaching Museum
Washington, DC, United States, North America

Installation views

Object Label

Protest happens in big and small ways all over the world. People gather to march with signs and slogans, stage sit-ins, and rally for common causes. Photographers bear witness to these events, documenting that they occurred, and in distributing the images, countless others bear witness, too.

In Rirkrit Tiravanija’s drawings (copied from photographs by other artists) he removes context about the scene’s place, time, and purpose, questioning how we view such imagery. With so many events and atrocities vying for our attention, how do we focus on, understand, or remember? Once we visually testify to an event, what happens next?

From the exhibition: Give a damn. (June 30 – September 30, 2018)

Ongoing Research

Research on our collection is ongoing. If you have resources you’d like to share, please contact Associate Curator Rebecca McNamara.

Tang Collective Catalog

Objects and images are evidence. They reveal the struggles and joys of our past and present. They help us to write histories—and rewrite those histories when we get things wrong. They tell us that injustice is not new. Police brutality is not new. Racism is not new. White supremacy and white complicity are not new. Progress has happened, but progress has been slow, uneven, and way too small. An Associated Press photograph from the August 1963 March on Washington shows protestors marching with a casket and banners with slogans like “We Demand an End to Bias Now!” 1963 should not look or feel so eerily familiar. We need to make more progress. Let’s educate ourselves: understanding our past allows us to understand our present and to then build the just future we need and deserve. Examining objects and images as evidence is vital to self-education, but it must continue beyond social media. The next book on my anti-racist reading list is So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo. What’s on yours?
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