Past Exhibitions

Teenie Harris, Photographer: An American Story

October 29, 2011 – April 7, 2012


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Carnegie Museum of Art presents a groundbreaking retrospective of African American photographer Charles “Teenie” Harris (1908–­1998), featuring nearly a thousand of Harris’s most beautiful, appealing, and historically significant images.

Harris’s photographs—made in his studio and for the Pittsburgh Courier, the leading black newspaper of the time—chronicle a vibrant black urban community during the Jim Crow and Civil Rights eras. He captured the poetry of everyday common experience, as well as the extraordinary people who shaped the 20th century: entertainer Lena Horne, baseball star Jackie Robinson, and leaders such as John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr. Carnegie Museum of Art was entrusted with the archive of nearly 80,000 Teenie Harris negatives in 2001.

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Drawing on 10 years of research into the archive,Teenie Harris, Photographer: An American Story features immersive life-size projections combined with a newly commissioned jazz soundtrack. A large-scale chronology and a web-based interactive introduce visitors to the rich visual resources of the archive and offer access to firsthand accounts by Harris’s contemporaries. The final section of the exhibition is dedicated to an in-depth evaluation of Harris as an artist.

Exhibition Credits

Major support for this exhibition was provided by The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc., the National Endowment for the Humanities, and Richard King Mellon Foundation. Support was also provided by The Heinz Endowments and the Virginia Kaufman Fund. Support for the exhibition soundtrack was provided by BNY Mellon. Other generous support was provided by The Pittsburgh Foundation, The Fellows of Carnegie Museum of Art, and the Beal Publication Fund.

Works in the Exhibition

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Charles "Teenie" Harris

(Hill City Municipal Building)

c. 1930-1945

Installation Views