Founded by Henry Luce, publisher of Time, it was long one of the most popular and widely imitated of American magazines, selling more than 13.5 million copies a week at one point. From its start, Life emphasized photography, with gripping, superbly chosen news photographs, amplified by photo features and photo-essays on an international range of topics. Its photographers were the elite of their craft and enjoyed worldwide esteem. Published weekly from 1936 to 1972, the work of the photographers of LIFE magazine came to define the medium of photojournalism, and their photographs recorded history and informed us all for most of the 20th Century
LIFE published an astonishing number of the most memorable photographs ever made, and the exhibition features many of these photographs from defining moments of the 20th century. The exhibition of more than 50 photographs includes iconic images such as Alfred Eisenstaedt’s sailor kissing a nurse on VJ Day; powerful photographs from the 1960’s and the Civil Rights movement; memorable images of Sophia Loren, Marilyn Monroe, the Beatles and many more indelible photographs.
As LIFE’s founder and publisher, Henry Luce, wrote in 1936, when he outlined his vision and his aim for his new publication, LIFE’s mission was at-once grand and breathtakingly straightforward:
“To see life; to see the world; to eyewitness great events; to watch the faces of the poor and the gestures of the proud; to see strange things — machines, armies, multitudes, shadows in the jungle and on the moon; to see man’s work — his paintings, towers and discoveries; to see things thousands of miles away, things hidden behind walls and within rooms, things dangerous to come to; the women that men love and many children; to see and take pleasure in seeing; to see and be amazed; to see and be instructed …”
LIFE in Pictures
April 27 – June 24