powerHouse Books: Jamel Shabazz: A Time Before Crack

Once upon a time before crack, inner city communities were ravaged by poverty and unemployment, but not by the drug wars that tore families apart, destroying lives with needless violence and senseless addiction. Once upon a time before crack, pride and style were as inseparable as a beatbox and a mixtape, or a pair of shoes and a matching handbag. Once upon a time before crack Jamel Shabazz was onstage, working the streets of New York, capturing the faces and places of a time long gone.

Best known as the best hip-hop fashion photographer for his bestselling monograph, of my time (powerHouse Books, 2001), Shabazz revisited his archives and unearthed an exceptional collection of never-before-seen documentary photographs gathered for his third powerHouse Books release, A time before the crack. A visual diary of the streets of New York City from the mid-1970s to the mid-1980s, Shabazz’s distinctive photographs reveal the families, poses and players that made that era extraordinary.

Jamel Shabazz is best known for his iconic photographs of New York City in the 1980s. He is the author of ten monographs and has contributed to over three dozen other photography-related books. His photographs have been exhibited around the world and his work is part of the permanent collections of the Whitney Museum, the Studio Museum in Harlem, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture, the Fashion Instutite of Technology, the Gordon Parks Foundation and of the Getty Museum. Over the years, Shabazz has trained young students in the Studio Museum in Harlem’s “Expanding the Walls” project, the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture’s “Teen Curators” program, and the Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation. He is also the 2018 recipient of the Gordon Parks Award for his commitment to documentary photography. Shabazz is a member of the Kamoinge photo collective. As an artist, his goal is to help preserve the history and culture of the world

Jamel Shabazz: A Time Before Crack
PowerHouse Books
Hardcover, ISBN 978-1-64823-005-9

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