DOYLESTOWN, PA — Beginning on September 9, 2017, the James A. Michener Art Museum will present A Time to Break Silence: Pictures of Social Change, a photography exhibition comprising 31 works that chronicle protests, social movements, and ideological shifts since the 1950s. Presented for the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s controversial speech entitled “Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break Silence,” from which it draws inspiration, the exhibition will be on view in the Bette and Nelson Pfundt Gallery through February 4, 2018. The main exhibition on view at the Michener is George Sotter: Light and Shadow, which runs through December 31.
The show includes photographs from Edmund Eckstein’s celebrated Coming of Rage series and New Hope photographer Jack Rosen’s images of a changing society in southeastern Pennsylvania as well as numerous other works from contemporary artists Tim Portlock and Justyna Badach documenting volatile social environments. Accompanying this diverse set of images are call-to-action quotes from King’s 1967 speech that are echoed in today’s similarly complicated times.
“Photographs are a powerful medium to convey social unrest and change, and the historical photographs in this exhibition reveal struggles that are both widely shared and intensely personal,” said Kelsey Halliday Johnson, executive director of the SPACE Gallery in Portland, Maine and former Michener curatorial fellow in photography and new media, who curated the exhibit. “I know this show will resonate with today’s audiences as much as it will with those who experienced the eras and the turmoil depicted in these photographs.”
Lisa Tremper Hanover, director and CEO of the Michener Art Museum, added: “‘These images are especially meaningful in today’s social and political landscape, and give us pause to as we continue to navigate important issues in our nation and in the world.”
The Michener Art Museum will host a gallery talk with artist Ed Eckstein on November 7 at 2 p.m.
The exhibition program in the Bette and Nelson Pfundt Gallery is presented by Vivian Banta and Robert Field. For more details about this exhibition and others at the Michener Art Museum, visit MichenerArtMuseum.org.