CONTACT HIGH: A Visual History of Hip-Hop – April 2019
Annenberg Space for Photography's spring 2019 exhibit will celebrate the photographers who have played critical roles in bringing hip-hop's visual culture to the global stage. The show is based on the soon-to-be released book by Vikki Tobak, CONTACT HIGH: A Visual History of Hip-Hop (Random House/Clarkson Potter), an inside look at the work of hip-hop photographers, as told through their most intimate diaries: their unedited contact sheets.
Curated by Tobak and produced in partnership with United Photo Industries (UPI), the photographic exhibition will display 120 works from 60 photographers. Taking the audience into the original and unedited contact sheets, from Barron Claiborne's iconic Biggie Smalls shots to early images of Jay-Z, Kendrick Lamar, and Kanye West as they first took to the scene to Janette Beckman's defining photos of Salt-N-Pepa to Jamel Shabazz and Gordon Parks documenting hip-hop culture, this exhibit will allow visitors to look directly through the photographer's lens and observe all of the pictures taken during these legendary moments. Rare videos, memorabilia, and music will celebrate how the documentation of a cultural phenomenon impacts not just music, but politics and social movements around the world.