Collection Close-Up: Bruce Davidson’s Photographs comprises a focused selection from the museum’s permanent collection of Bruce Davidson’s (b. 1933) most consequential series made between 1956 and 2006.
The exhibition highlights the American photographer’s sustained engagement with social and political issues. A leading figure in the history of documentary photography, Davidson 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 during 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. 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 Manhattan in New York City.