Exhibit Celebrates Look Magazine’s First Female Photographer

Charlotte Brooks joined the magazine in 1951.

Opening today at the Davis Museum at Wellesley College in Massachusetts and running through Dec. 18, “Charlotte Brooks at Look, 1951-1971” honors the legacy of a true pioneer.

As Time magazine History and Archives editor Lily Roth and photo editor Lizabeth Ronk note in a piece about Brooks, when she started as Look’s first female full-time photographer, she was tasked with relatively benign assignments. But as the times changed, her purview became broader and and more meaningful:

As the relative stability of the 1950s gave way to the upheaval of the 1960s, Brooks chronicled the transformation from the inside. Among her subjects were Duke Ellington on tour through the segregated south; a young, working, single mother at a time when few were visible; and the first gay couple to marry legally in the U.S.

A talk with exhibition curator Ileana Selejan, The Linda Wyatt Gruber ‘66 Curatorial Fellow in Photography, is scheduled for Oct. 4 at 4 p.m. For media types, an even more enticing date to jot down on the calendar in connection with this show is Oct. 18. That evening, Selejan will moderate a panel discussion about “Photojournalism in the Age of Picture Magazines” with former Look and Life magazine photographer John Shearer and Annie Segan, the daughter of photographer Arthur Rothstein.

The show catalog, priced at $25, is also available to purchase online.

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