Collection Close-Up: Bruce Davidson’s Photographs

Dec 10, 2021 – May 29, 2022
Main Building
Primarily drawn from an anonymous gift to the Menil Collection of approximately 350 works by American photographer Bruce Davidson (b. 1933), the exhibition highlights his sustained engagement with social and political concerns. He is known for establishing personal relationships with his subjects, working over extended periods of time in diverse places and communities to create in-depth series that capture, what he has described as, “worlds in transition.” Examples include people in New York City’s Central Park (in the 1960s and early 1990s), the rigidly stratified class structure in postwar Britain (in the 1960s), and Time of Change, his critically acclaimed images of the American civil rights movement (from 1960 to 1965). Seeking a shared humanity, Davidson enters circumscribed worlds and offers an intimate perspective through his images of circus performers, Brooklyn gang members, Welsh miners, the neighborhoods of East Harlem, and Jewish cafeterias on the Lower East Side of New York City.

Curated by Molly Everett, Curatorial Assistant, Modern and Contemporary Art, at the Menil Collection.

This exhibition is generously supported by Anne Levy Charitable Trust; Franci Neely; Erla and Harry Zuber; and the City of Houston through Houston Arts Alliance.