Latino Diaspora: Photography of Joe Schwartz
Joe Schwartz was a remarkable photographer and local legend best known for capturing the essence of human dignity in settings of economic disparity. The San Luis Obispo Museum of Art is proud to present Latino Diaspora, an exhibition of rarely or never-seen photography from the Joe Schwartz Estate on view from January 6 – February 26, 2017. The SLOMA exhibition highlights photographs taken in Los Angeles housing projects and Mexico around the 1950s. A public opening of the exhibition will take place in conjunction with Art After Dark on Friday, January 6, 2017 from 6 PM – 9 PM.
Artist, activist, and humanitarian Joe Schwartz was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. He served as a combat photographer in the Marines during WWII. As a member of the legendary Photo League, he sought to portray the lives of ordinary Americans in the urban environment. Schwartz moved to Atascadero, California in 1985 and lived there until he died in 2013. He was a prolific photographer and is recognized worldwide for his ability to capture special moments with the sensibility of a participant, not a spectator. His photography won numerous awards and is displayed in collections worldwide, including the recently opened Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture.
Today, Schwartz’s work serves as a reminder that poverty and dire social conditions cannot erase the strength and beauty of the human spirit. His photographic legacy offers a timely reminder that grim issues still exist today. An interactive “Talk Back Wall” will create space for comments and reactions to the exhibition and life today.
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