Bruce Silverstein Gallery is pleased to announce Black in White America, an exhibition of works by Leonard Freed taken during the 1960s. In 1962 Leonard Freed went to Berlin to photograph the wall being erected between East and West Berlin. While there he saw an African American soldier standing in front of the wall and it struck him that at home in the United States, African Americans were struggling for civil rights and in Germany an African American soldier was proudly defending the USA—the same country denying him his rights. When Freed returned, he traveled to New York, Washington, D.C. and all throughout the South, capturing images of a segregated and racially-entrenched society.
This important body of work is representative of the political, racial and ideological unrest of the 1960s. Black in White America highlights the tradition and ideals of the Magnum Photo Agency as well as Leonard Freed's personal and most admirable attempt to bring awareness to atrocities occurring at home in the United States. While there were many photographers both black and white documenting the Civil Rights Movement for the daily press, Freed approached the project with the intention of having his photographs sequenced in a cohesive book. The photos were ultimately published in 1968 in "Black in White America".