“Requiem: By the Photographers Who Died in Vietnam and Indochina” has opened for display at the South Carolina Confederate Relic Room and Military Museum. The exhibit is of 55 photographs of the Vietnam War that were taken by photographers who all were killed or are missing in that conflict. The exhibit opened March 5th and will run through May 29th and is sponsored by the George Eastman House, International Museum of Photography and Film of Rochester, New York.
The photos cover the period from the French Indochina War of the 1950s to the fall of Phnom Penh and Saigon in 1975. The work of 23 photographers, some well-known, some not, are used. Among those who are included are Larry Burrows who took the picture that was used for Life Magazine’s first major cover story on the Vietnam War and brought home the fact that American soldiers were involved in a major conflict on the other side of the world. In some cases, the photos used were the last frames shot by the phtographer. Also on exhibit is a Yashica 35mm camera used by CSM Mac Cassidy during his second tour of duty in Vietnam, While he was not a phoytojournalist, some of his pictures were used in military magazines.
The photographs featured are the best of thousands gathered by Horst Faas and Tim Page, two photographers who were wounded in Vietnam. They decided that the works of famous photojournalists like Robert Capa and Burrows would hang alongside those of unknown photographers who contributed significant pictures before their death.
Since 1997, Requiem has traveled to several cities in the United States including, New York, Washington, Chicago and Atlanta-drawing record crowds at each venue, including veterans of the war and many young people who were not yet born when the war ended. International showings have included stops in Hanoi, Tokyo and London. An exhibition of Requiem has been on display in Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon) since 2000.
The exhibit is well worth the effort. The images cover the waterfront from the pre-war tranquil countryside to the evacuations of 1975. It can bring back some memories of that era.
The Relic Room is at 301 Gervais Street, Columbia. The exhibit is included in the regular museum admission. Click here for details.
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