The Era of Change Is Now

Las Fotos Project Celebrates 10 Years of Viewing Los Angeles Through the Lens of Young Women

The 18 teenagers logged onto Zoom that Thursday evening had every reason to sound weary. It had been, collectively speaking, a rough week in the rough fall of 2020. During the check-in discussion of roses and thorns (highlights and lowlights, respectively), the group of 13- to 17-year-old photographers spoke about how they weren’t sleeping well. How they were worried about parents, who were essential workers on the frontlines of the pandemic. How they were having trouble studying for the SATs. How they were just feeling less passionate, in general.

But the …

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Repainting History in Technicolor | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

Repainting History in Technicolor

Esiri Erheriene-Essi’s 'Familiar Strangers' Finds New Recognition in Photographs of the Mid-Century African Diaspora

The earliest colored photographs were fragile black-and-white daguerreotypes, hand-painted with a watercolor technique. The task was laborious, not to mention risky, because the plates were so easily damaged. But the …

How My Great-Grandfather Dealt With a Lout Named Jack London | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

How My Great-Grandfather Dealt With a Lout Named Jack London

A Muralist Finds Herself Captivated by the Bay Area Writer, Crusader for Justice, and Drunken Brawler

Growing up in the Bay Area, I heard a lot of family lore about Jack London, and my great-grandfather George Samuels.

Samuels had been a district attorney, a police court judge, …

The Mystical, Magical, Terrifying Supernatural Cats of Japan | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

The Mystical, Magical, Terrifying Supernatural Cats of Japan

From Shapeshifters to Demonic Corpse Eaters, Centuries of Catlore on the Prowl

Japan loves cats. A quick glance at anything related to Japanese pop culture will show you this: Hello Kitty. Cat cafes. Wearable electronic cat ears that respond to your emotional …

‘Sharp and Subversive’ Scenes of Integrated 1940s Summer Camps  | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

‘Sharp and Subversive’ Scenes of Integrated 1940s Summer Camps 

Gordon Parks's Photos of Black and White Kids at Play Resisted Segregation in Nature and Beyond by Presenting a Vision of America as He Hoped It Could Be

One day in 1923, three white boys pushed 11-year-old Gordon Parks into the Marmaton River in rural Kansas. Parks couldn’t swim and he tumbled under the surface, the current pushing …

Where Tulare Lake Once Was, a New Telling of California’s History | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

Where Tulare Lake Once Was, a New Telling of California’s History

Jesse Amble White’s Photographs Show Modern Landscapes That ‘Push Back at the Moment’

All but one of these photographs of California by Jesse White come from California Exposures, a book that he and I, his father, did together. Like all photographs, they don’t …