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Photographer Tapped for Brooklyn Museum Exhibition

Kris Graves ’04 commissioned by EJI to create work for The Legacy of Lynching currently on view.

Kris Graves ’04 (photography) was recently commissioned by the Equal Justice Initiative to illustrate oral histories that are part of an exhibition currently on view at the Brooklyn Museum, The Legacy of Lynching: Confronting Racial Terror in America.

According to, “The Legacy of Lynching: Confronting Racial Terror in America seeks to spark an honest conversation about the legacy of racial injustice in America today. Coordinated in collaboration with the Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) and Google, this exhibition presents EJI’s groundbreaking research into the history of lynchings and connects it to artworks and archival material from the Brooklyn Museum’s collections.” The exhibition is on view through September 3, 2017.

Graves was one of six African American photographers chosen for the project. Google tapped Graves after seeing a Vanity Fair article on his most recent project, A Bleak Reality, which documents the sites at which eight black males—whose names are all too familiar—were killed by police. The moving portraits were all taken at about the same time of day when their lives were lost.

For the Legacy of Lynching project, Graves traveled to Mississippi to photograph the location where a man was lynched in 1919. “That same week I went out to LA to photograph a 109-year-old who escaped that same town during the Great Flight. The man was family to her. I photographed her and her son in her son’s house,” he says.

See the images from A Bleak Reality accompanied by his notes in Vanity Fair.

View the Legacy of Lynching body of work on

Graves’ image is among five chosen by the Brooklyn Museum from this project for their collection.