Wright Morris Gano Grain Elevator, Western Kansas 1939

  • MoMA, Floor 5, 519 The Alfred H. Barr, Jr. Galleries

Before writing 12 Million Black Voices, Wright spent many hours in the photographic archives of the Farm Security Administration, gaining what he called “a comprehensive picture of our country.” During the Great Depression, the FSA sent photographers to the southern United States, where they made more than sixty-five thousand photographs of Americans experiencing economic hardship. From this archive Wright gathered images of Black life in the US, crafting an accompanying narrative of enslavement, freedom, systemic oppression, and survival. His book concludes hopefully: “The seasons of the plantation no longer dictate the lives of many of us; hundreds of thousands of us are moving into the sphere of conscious history.”

Gallery label from 2022
Gelatin silver print
9 1/2 × 7 3/4" (24.1 × 19.7 cm)
Photography Purchase Fund
Object number

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