For some reason pretty much entirely unknown to us, we ended up tagging along yesterday at the ICP’s walkaround of the very newly opened Hasted Hunt gallery. We went to the Saturday opening but couldn’t see very much of the artwork because for real nine million people were there and we don’t like crowds. Our savvy co-partycrasher, who managed to see more of the pictures, pointed out that it was all photojournalism as art. Which turns out was sort of the point.
The work is from photographers from the agency VII, and a lot of it is pretty difficult. Which is again sort of the point. The theme of the show is conflict, which ranges from a Ron Haviv shot taken in Darfur to a fantastic Lauren Greenfield photo of seventh-graders on their way to a party. Antonin Kratochvil took a horrific photograph of a body with just a skull on it. People complained. His response: There were kids in the picture who had to see it in real life. So kids in real life should have to look at the picture. Then maybe they’ll be inspired to do something to stop it.
Don’t worry — the show doesn’t moralize; it informs. Beautifully, and devastatingly.
Hasted Hunt, 529 West 20th, 3rd Floor.