Accra Shepp’s Radical Justice: Lifting Every Voice

Lee Ann Norman, The Brooklyn Rail, June 3, 2022

These portraits of protesters fill critical gaps in the narrative around the haves and have-nots.


Accra Shepp never thought of himself as a documentarian, though his sense of artistic responsibility to highlight that which might go unnoticed and to look closely compelled him to consider how images can help us understand the human condition more clearly. Radical Justice: Lifting Every Voice brings together two bodies of Shepp’s work—photographic portraits of people protesting in Zuccotti Park during the Occupy Wall Street movement in Lower Manhattan in 2011 and the racial justice protests across New York City throughout the summer of 2020. The book, filled with hundreds of black-and-white images, also features an introduction by the scholar and critic Salamishah Tillet serving as a bridge between these two moments and an essay by the artist reflecting on how photographs tell the stories of justice movements....