Event—Public Programming

Photographic Memory: Carlos Javier Ortiz Reflects on Jun Fujita’s Iconic Images


In this program, director, documentary photographer, and cinematographer Carlos Javier Ortiz will converse with journalist Ethan Michaeli to reflect on the legacy of Jun Fujita’s artistic career.

Best known for photographing the Eastland Disaster and the 1919 riots, Fujita sought to document scenes of urban life in Chicago throughout his career. In his talk, Ortiz will consider the relevance of Fujita’s work to contemporary photography and to his own current project: a series of short films chronicling the stories of black Americans who came to the North during the Great Migration.

Carlos Javier Ortiz is a director, cinematographer, and documentary photographer who focuses on gun violence, racism, poverty, and marginalized communities. In 2016, Ortiz received a Guggenheim Fellowship for film/video. He won the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Photography award for his long-term project titled Too Young To Die. His work has been exhibited nationally and internationally.

Ethan Michaeli is the author of The Defender: How the Legendary Black Newspaper Changed America, (2016) praised by The New York Times as “a towering achievement that will not be soon forgotten.” Winner of the Best Non Fiction of 2016 prizes from the Chicago Writers Association as well as the Midland Authors Association, named as a Notable Book of 2016 by The New York Times, the Washington Post and Amazon, and to the short list of the Mark Lynton Prize.

This event is made possible by a major grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. It is being held in conjunction with our current exhibition, Jun Fujita: American Visionary, co-presented with the Poetry Foundation.

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