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The Arts Intel Report

A Cultural Compass
For the World Traveler
A Cultural Compass
For the World Traveler

Ernest Cole: A Lens in Exile

Ernest Cole, Harlem, New York, c. 1970.

Rivington Pl, Hackney, London EC2A 3BA, UK

The South African photographer Ernest Cole, born in 1940, was still quite young when he made a name for himself documenting life under apartheid. He escaped to New York City in 1966—and his negatives came with him. The photographs were published in 1967, in the seminal collection House of Bondage, an acclaimed book that was banned in South Africa. Cole never again set foot in his home country. Far from escaping a racialized society, however, Cole found himself embedded in another one. He focused his camera on the Black communities of Harlem and the civil rights movement. The exhibition “A Lens in Exile” contains pictures of Black Panther rallies and protests as well as more playful moments of everyday American life. —Paulina Prosnitz

Photo: © Ernest Cole/Magnum Photos

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