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The George Eastman Museum presents a History of Photography through the immigrant lens

A new rotation in the History of Photography Gallery celebrating photographs by immigrants to the United States will open on October 26

Rochester, N.Y., October 15, 2019—The George Eastman Museum will open a new rotation in its History of Photography Gallery on October 26, which celebrates contributions by a selection of photographers who immigrated or moved to the United States. Many became naturalized citizens as they recorded their perspectives on an unfamiliar country, and most have become key figures in the history of photography.

This installation highlights the fresh vision and pictorial insight brought to America by newcomers. Photographers such as Napoleon Sarony (American, b. Canada, 1821–1896) and José Maria Mora (American, b. Cuba, 1849–1926) dedicated their careers to creating portraits of notable Americans, including Presidents Abraham Lincoln and Grover Cleveland. Others documented the American landscape at key moments. Arnold Genthe (American, b. Germany, 1869–1942) recorded the chaotic aftermath of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake, and Andreas Feininger (American, b. France, 1906–1999) photographed the bright lights and hectic environment of Times Square in the 1940s. In the 21st century, photographers such as Vietnam-born Binh Danh (b. 1977) turned their lenses on the regions of the world from which they emigrated, while others, like Marco Breuer (German, b. 1966), have maintained their native citizenship while living and working in the United States.

This installation of photographs in the History of Photography Gallery was curated by Meghan L. Jordan, Curatorial Assistant, with Jamie M. Allen, the Stephen B. and Janice G. Ashley Associate Curator. The exhibition will remain on view through April 19, 2020.

Public Programming

Focus 45: Relocating to America: A History of Photography through the Immigrant Lens
Saturday, November 9, 12 p.m.
Curtis Theatre

Meghan L. Jordan and Jamie M. Allen, curators of the latest rotation in the History of Photography Gallery, will discuss their selection, which focus on photographs created by immigrants to this country. The talk is free to members and included with museum admission.

About the History of Photography Gallery
The George Eastman Museum photography collection is among the best and most comprehensive in the world. With holdings that include objects ranging in date from the announcement of the medium’s invention in 1839 to the present day, the collection represents the full history of photography. Works by renowned masters of the medium exist side-by-side with vernacular and scientific photographs. The collection also includes all applications of the medium, from artistic pursuit to commercial enterprise and from amateur pastime to documentary record, as well as all types of photographic processes, from daguerreotypes to digital prints. The museum's History of Photography Gallery is dedicated to rotating installations that demonstrate photography’s historical trajectory through photographs and cameras drawn from the collection. The selection of photographs changes twice a year, and each rotation offers new opportunities to engage with the museum's treasures.

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