Faces of Freedom Summer: The Photographs of Herbert Randall

Faces of Freedom Summer Open September 2-December 6

Fifty years ago, Western College for Women, now a part of Miami University known as Western Campus, witnessed one of the most progressive events of its time, when nearly 800 students gathered for week-long orientation sessions. These students weren’t gathering for their college orientation but, rather, came together to prepare themselves for participation in the Mississippi Summer Project, for which they would assist with voter registration of African Americans in Mississippi.

The United States in 1964 was a different place; racist sentiments ran strong in the South, and participants in the Mississippi Summer Project knowingly placed themselves in potential mortal danger. After three volunteers were killed during their efforts, the campaign became better known as Freedom Summer.

In honor of the 50th anniversary of Freedom Summer, the Miami University Art Museum is proud to provide students with the opportunity to view many powerful photographs by photojournalist Herbert Randall (on loan from the University of Southern Mississippi's McCain Library and Archives) alongside related materials from Miami's Western Archives and the Art Museum's collection.

This exhibition is co-curated by Curator of Exhibitions, Jason Shaiman and Student Curatorial Intern, Syndey Johnson ('14)

About Herbert Randall

Herbert Randall, a freelance photographer originally from the Bronx, New York, is best known for his work associated with Faces of Freedom Summer. Persuaded by the director of the Mississippi Summer Project, Sanford R. Leigh, Randall traveled to Hattiesburg, Mississippi to document members of the African American community as well as volunteers in their effort to assist with black voter registration in the South. Only five of Randall’s photographs were published that summer, and the rest sat in a file for nearly 40 years until he donated his negatives to the archives of The University of Southern Mississippi. When their documentary value became known, the photographs were publicized in the book Faces of Freedom Summer: The Photographs of Herbert Randall.

Come to the Miami University Art Museum to see the photographs of Herbert Randall, whose work has been exhibited at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Museum of Modern Art, Brooklyn Museum and elsewhere.


Gallery Guide Cover Image

Gallery Guide (on-line version) [Faces of Freedom Summer graphics designed by Kyle Asperger Graphic Design undergrad]