On 10 February 2017, SONS, SEEING THE MODERN AFRICAN AMERICAN MALES, a photographic exhibition about how the Black American male is perceived and how he perceives himself will open at the Ella Sharp Museum in Jackson, MI. The installation at the Ella Sharp Museum will be the third since SONS premiered in February 2016 at the African American Museum of Nassau County in Hempstead, NY. The exhibition is currently installed at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum in Baltimore. SONS is the latest project of photographer Jerry Taliaferro . In October, Taliaferro traveled to Jackson MI and photographed and videoed almost 40 local subjects for this exhibition. The featuring of local subjects and the focus upon issues facing Black American males from the hosting community is the beating heart of the exhibition. By focusing upon local subjects and issues the project is made more timely and relevant.
While SONS is a powerful photographic exhibition it is also very effective practical exercise in “seeing”. Photography is the medium used to move visitors through a simple exercise in perceptions. Even in the most cursory tour of the exhibition, the visitor must reconcile his/her perceptions or “snap judgements” of anonymous black and white images with color images accompanied with names, description and video of the same subjects. Perception meets reality.