Harlem, NYC, by Leonard Freed
Harlem, NYC, by Leonard Freed

A new exhibition featuring portraits of children from UofL’s Photographic Archives’ Fine Print collection is on display now. The exhibition, titled “Fine Young Kids,” includes the work of critically acclaimed photographers such as Leonard Freed, Sally Mann, Bruce Davidson, Bill Carner, Arthur Leipzig, Nicholas Nixon, Barbara Crawford and Ralph Eugene Meatyard. 

There are 31 photos included, in both color and black and white and taken from 1940 through 2012.

Assistant curator Marcy Werner artfully arranged the portraits in clusters or in juxtaposition, causing the viewer to consider childhood from differing perspectives: How has childhood changed through the years? How does an American childhood differ from those abroad? How do children process adult values? 

“While many of these photographs appear to be straight portraiture, whimsy or documentation, there is additional meaning in the context of place and pose. Most of these children appear quite aware their photos were being taken. How they chose to present themselves provides relatable moments, if one can remember what it was like to be a kid,” Werner said.

The exhibition is for the young and young-at-heart. Families with children are invited to peruse the portraits and also visit the Multicultural Children’s Literature Collection on the third floor. The collection features thousands of multicultural and diversity-related books and materials for children of all ages.

“Fine Young Kids” is in the Photographic Archives and Kain Rare Books Gallery in the lower level of Ekstrom Library, Belknap Campus, through May 25. Click here for gallery hours, directions and other information.

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Niki King

Niki King Jones is positive she has the best job at the University of Louisville, serving the communication needs of the departments of fine arts and theatre, the School of Music, University Libraries and Alumni – all the fun, creative stuff. Before coming to UofL in 2015, Niki held communication positions in both private and nonprofit sectors in Louisville, Ky., including at Heaven Hill Distilleries and the Jewish Community of Louisville. For 10 years prior, she was a reporter at various newspapers across the country, most recently The Courier-Journal. Niki graduated from the University of Memphis with a BA in journalism and has a masters degree in community and leadership development from the University of Kentucky.