In the introduction to the third volume of The Black Photographers Annual, James Baldwin wrote, “This book is a testimony—I am tempted to call it a testimony service—and, like all truthful witnessing, it is beautiful and frightening, devastating and ennobling.” In the spirit of Baldwin’s description, this exhibition emphasizes the myriad perspectives presented in this volume, featuring a range of artists, including Anthony Barboza, Adger Cowans, Roy DeCarva, Mikki Ferrill, Marilyn Nance, Beuford Smith, Ming Smith, and Shawn Walker.

Curated by Dr. Sarah Eckhardt, Associate Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art, Truthful Witnessing is the third in a series of rotations exploring each of the four volumes of The Black Photographers Annual (1973–80).

This series of exhibitions is sponsored by Dr. Ronald A. Crutcher and Dr. Betty Neal Crutcher.


Explore the Black Photographers Annual Explore the Black Photographers Annual, vol 3

Co-founded by Beuford Smith and Joe Crawford, this digital representation of The Black Photographers Annual was made possible by the generosity of Mr. Smith, who granted the VMFA a copyright license to present these volumes online for two years.

Explore the Black Photographers Annual