Civil Rights photographer James Hinton's penetrating work on view at the Thomas J. Walsh Art Gallery at Fairfield University


Image: Photo by James HintonThe provocative works of James Hinton, whose camera captured the public and private sides of the Civil Rights Movement, will be on display in "Images from the 1960s - Photographs of James Hinton" from Thursday, Jan. 23 through Sunday, March 23 at the Thomas J. Walsh Art Gallery at Fairfield University. An opening reception will be held Thursday, Jan. 23 from 6 to 8 p.m. in the gallery, which is located in the Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts. Mr. Hinton will lecture on his work at 6:30 p.m.

Mr. Hinton, who is an award-winning filmmaker, began his career just as the Civil Rights Movement was gaining momentum and produced an archive of thousands of photographs from that era. An affable man with a deep commitment to full rights for African Americans, he established a rapport with many activists and documented their work. But his collection also includes those who walked alongside Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., angry crowds gathered beside march routes in the North and South, and literary and cultural figures, such as Mahalia Jackson and Muhammad Ali, who lent their names to the cause.

"The poignant black and white photographs of James Hinton offer both a first-hand account and personal perspective of the 1960s - a period of great struggle, tumult and consequence for all who experienced the decade," said Philip Verre, director of the Hudson Valley Museum, which exhibited his works in 2000.

Hinton began exhibiting his photographs as early as 1963 and trained at the highly regarded Kamonge photography workshop for African Americans in New York in 1965. He shot for black-issue news and television programs before he turned to commercial film production in the late 1960s.

Because of his friendships with national figures, Hinton had access to places were supporters met with leaders, such as the offices of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and the Black Panthers, as well as the Lewis Michaud bookstore in Harlem and Pasquel's Motel cafe´, where several black leaders met for a strategy breakfast on the morning of King's funeral. Most of his images were shot in Chicago and Harlem, but he also chronicled events in Alabama, Mississippi and California. In addition, his oeuvre covers public demonstrations both for and against the Vietnam War.

"Collectively, the work of James Hinton speaks personally and poignantly of a complex and troubled period in American history," Verre said.

A longtime Dobbs Ferry, N.Y. resident, Mr. Hinton teaches filmmaking at the State University of New York at Purchase.

Mr. Hinton's work will be on view at the Walsh Gallery Tuesdays through Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sundays from noon to 4 p.m. Admission is free. For more information, call (203) 254-4010, ext. 2969.

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Media Contact: Nancy Habetz, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2647, nhabetz@fairfield.edu

Posted on November 15, 2002

Vol. 35, No. 121