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The Guardian

1990 Earlie Hudnall, Jr. Born: Hattiesburg, Mississippi 1946 gelatin silver print sheet: 19 7/8 x 16 in. (50.4 x 40.7 cm.) Smithsonian American Art Museum Museum purchase © 1990, Earlie Hudnall, Jr. 1994.23.4 Not currently on view

Exhibition Label

Many of Hudnall’s photographs focus on children and the elderly. “A unique commonality exists between young and old,” he observes, “because there is always a continuity between the past and the future. It is this commonality which I strive to depict in my work.” In The Guardian, a father enfolds his young daughter as they stand along a street reflected in the mirrored lenses of his glasses. The American flag tucked behind his ear suggests more – that in addition to warmth and affection, he is passing on a sense of community and patriotic pride.

African American Art: Harlem Renaissance, Civil Rights Era, and Beyond, 2012


Allegory - other - vigilance

Ethnic - African-American

Figure group - male and child

Object - other - flag

photography - photoprint


gelatin silver