new-york

Aaron Siskind

Midtown Y Gallery

In the late ’30s the Feature Group of the Photo League, a New York photography organization which would be hounded out of existence during the McCarthy era, produced a series of documentary projects about the city. The most extensive of these was “Harlem Document,” produced in 1938–40 with the help of black sociologist Michael Carter, who also wrote the text for the finished version. “Harlem Document” was exhibited at various locations around New York; a book was prepared, but never published. An exhibition that attempted to reconstruct this original “Harlem Document” (or what remains of it—Carter’s text has apparently been lost) would be of great interest not only for its picture of life in the black community during the Depression, but as evidence of early work by the photographers involved—first and foremost Aaron Siskind, founder and leader of the Feature Group, but also Morris Engel,

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