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Dawoud Bey's Interest in Photography and Portraiture

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Uploaded on Aug 20, 2009

Last February 2008, Dawoud Bey and Carrie Mae Weems were in conversation discussing the work from Beys acclaimed book and exhibition, on view at the time at Aperture Gallery, "Class Pictures." In this excerpt from the talk, Dawoud Bey explains how he decided to become a photographer, telling about his first significant picture as well as his approach to portraiture through his Harlem series.

"Class Pictures" (Aperture, 2007) features Beys striking, large-scale color portraits of students at high schools across the United States. Depicting teenagers from a wide economic, social, and ethnic spectrum—and intensely attentive to their poses and gestures—he has created a highly diverse group portrait of a generation that challenges teenage stereotypes.

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