PDN Photo of the Day

The Haves, Not the Have Nots

Documentary photography has tended to focus on poverty and its effects. But at a time when one percent of the population controls 50 percent of the world’s wealth, a new international exhibition presents work by more than 20 photographers who have examined the privileges and trappings of wealth, and the pursuit of money. Curated by Myles Little, a photo editor at TIME magazine, the exhibition, tentatively titled “1%: Privilege in a Time of Global Inequality,” features roughly 30 prints. The topics and locations depicted in the images vary, from Nina Berman’s photograph of a monitor in the office of a hedge fund manager to David Chancellor’s image of a heavily armed guard at a mine in Tanzania. Other photographers in the show include Juliana Sohn, Christopher Anderson, Peter Bialobrzeski, Michael Light, Mike Osborne, David Leventi and Anna Skladmann. Little says, “I chose photographers who make beautifully crafted, thoughtful images. I wanted a very cohesive esthetic, and only chose calm, medium-format color images.”

Starting this month, the exhibition will tour photo festivals and venues around the world, including the Pingyao International FestivalEast Wing Gallery in Dubai, LagosPhoto, GuatePhoto, Gage Gallery at Roosevelt University, through 2016. Following a successful Kickstarter campaign, the work will also be published as a book by Hatje Cantz.

“I want to reach as many people as possible: liberal and conservative, rich and poor, here and abroad,” Little says. “If you are at all concerned that the top one percent owns 50 percent of global wealth, or that six members of the Walton family own more wealth than the bottom 40 percent of America, then this is the show for you.”

Update: A book version of the collection, 1%: Privilege in a Time of Global Inequality, including images by the exhibited photographers, was published by Hatje Cantz in 2016.

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  1. As someone who regularly photographs the middle and upper middle class, I can tell you with certainty that the photo from Henderson, Nevada does not represent the 1%. Nevada is a famously cheap place to live, and the tight spacing of these McMansions tells you that these are middle/upper middle class homes. Unless they live in vertical housing such as luxury buildings in major cities, the 1% buys single family homes with space around them, and custom features are key. I would bet that families with an annual income of 100 to $150,000 buy these homes in Henderson. While that is much more than most Americans will ever have, it is not the 1$.

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