• Sarah Morris

    White Cube | Mason's Yard

    Tommie Smith and John Carlos changed my life. Beamed in monochrome from Mexico City to a white boy in the nowhere provinces of England in 1968, the athletes’ silent gesture of graceful resistance under pressure—raising their fists in a black power salute at the Olympic medal ceremony—spoke loudly of the power of images to signify politically, economically, and ideologically. The Olympics matter. Four years later, everyone’s eyes were on Munich when a hooded member of the Palestinian Black September group peered over the balcony of an apartment in the athletes’ village. Inside were eleven Israeli

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  • “Street and Studio”

    Tate Modern

    The game is fixed: As a structure for comprehending the history of photography, the dualism “street and studio” can mean only “street” versus “studio”—and in that agon, street must always win, just as spontaneity will always triumph over control, the crowd over the individual, fate over intention, punctum over studium, Dionysus over Apollo, life over art. “In true photography,” as the poet and essayist Murat Nemet-Nejat once observed, “the subject in front of the lens tends to overwhelm the photographic medium, photographic space and photographic frame”—and this ecstasis of the subject is more

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