About 10 years ago, James Bond was rummaging through drawers and closets at his family’s old home, when he came across a stash of his father’s photo negatives from the 1930s. James Bond’s father was renowned historian and educator Horace Mann Bond and among the photographs were a collection of images he captured throughout the South documenting black education for the Rosenwald Fund, a trust established to build schools in rural areas.
“I knew that he was an amateur photographer,” said Bond, the younger brother of the later Julian Bond. “And when I saw them, I could tell they were great. Someone looked at some of them and said they were out of focus. But my father was not a trained photographer. He was a story teller and every one of those photos tells a story. Even the ones out of focus.”
On Saturday, more than 80 of Bonds’ stunning black and white photographs – “Education of the Negro: A Photographic Study by Dr. Horace Mann Bond” -- will be on display at Gallery L1 as part of Atlanta Celebrates Photography.
“We are going to bring as much justice to these photographs as possible,” said the exhibit’s curator Jason Maris Tuesday as he sifted through images Tuesday. “There is so much here. That is what makes this work so wonderful.”
(All photos below courtesy of James Bond.)
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