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Getty | Documenting Dissent: L.A. Artists’ Protest Photography

May 27, 2021 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

In the wake of an unprecedented year of protests, this conversation explores how artists and scholars use photography to record demonstrations of dissent. Focusing on documentation of protests in Los Angeles since the 1960s, moderators Allissa Richardson and Alex Jones explore the practice of protest photography with local artists George Rodriguez and Ted Soqui, contextualizing contemporary photojournalism in a broader historical framework of documentary photography and drawing on protest imagery in the Getty Research Institute collections.
George Rodriguez is a photographer with 40 years of experience documenting historical moments and social justice events in southern California, including the Chicano Moratorium and the 1992 Los Angeles protests. In 2019, his first career retrospective, George Rodriguez: Double Vision, was held at the Vincent Price Museum of East Los Angeles College.
Ted Soqui began his career covering 1980s breakdancing in Pasadena and the AIDS epidemic for the LA Weekly. His work encompasses events ranging from demonstrations and protests to drone photography of the pandemic. Soqui’s photographs frequently appear in national and international media, and he produces photo-essays for the online platform Capital & Main.
Alex Jones is a research assistant in Modern and Contemporary Collections at the Getty Research Institute. His current research focuses on Blackness and photography in the Charles Brittin archive.
Dr. Allissa V. Richardson is assistant professor of journalism at USC Annenberg. Her research focuses on how African Americans utilize mobile and social media to produce innovative forms of journalism, especially in times of crisis. Richardson is the author of Bearing Witness While Black: African Americans, Smartphones, and the New Protest #Journalism, winner of the Frank Luther Mott Award for the best book on journalism and mass communication in 2020.
This program is organized as a collaboration between the J. Paul Getty Museum and the Getty Research Institute, on the occasion of the Photo Flux: Unshuttering L.A. (May 25–October 17, 2021) and In Focus: Protest exhibitions (June 29–October 10, 2021).
The conversation will be recorded and available on Getty Research Institute’s YouTube channel.
Image: Activists picket for housing equality while American Nazi Party members counter-protest with anti-integration slogans and racist epithets, Los Angeles, 1963. Photograph by Charles Brittin. Getty Research Institute, 2005.M.11. © J. Paul Getty Trust