On the Horizon: Exhibiting the Family of Man
On February 22, 1955, six thousand people spent the damp, gray afternoon of Washington’s Birthday looking at a photography exhibition in the Museum of Modern Art. It was the most spectacular attendance record in the museum’s twenty-five-year history, marred only by a stubborn lady who was later reported in the papers to have demanded her admission refunded on the grounds that there were no paintings on view—obviously a creature unwilling to make adjustments necessary to the vagaries of modern museology.
All in all, more than a quarter of a million people jammed the museum to see “The Family of Man” exhibition in New York; and the Minneapolis Institute of Art, where the exhibition was installed during the summer, reported an even larger per capita attendance in that city. There is no reason to believe that the show will draw smaller crowds in Dallas, Cleveland, Philadelphia, Baltimore, or Pittsburgh, where it will be seen during the months ahead, for it has already received heavier press coverage than any comparable “artistic” event in our history. Following its American tour, the exhibition will travel abroad under the auspices of the United States Information Agency.
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