An exhibit of work by Maurice Sorrell and Devin Allen featuring leading figures from the civil rights era and the rise of citizen activism


Moments Within the Movement: A Conversation

Devin Allen and Stephanie Renée on the power of photography and citizen activism in contesting social injustice

Fields of Knowledge
  • Memory
  • Public culture
  • Social Justice

Organizing Institutions

Penn Social Justice & Arts Integration Initiative, Slought


Aaron Levy & Stephanie Renée

Opens to public





4017 Walnut St
Philadelphia, PA 19104

On the web


Slought and Penn Social Policy & Practice are pleased to announce Moments Within the Movement: A Conversation, featuring photographer Devin Allen and curator Stephanie Renée in dialogue about the power of portraiture and social documentary to foreground the reality of oppression and the importance of emancipation and freedom. The event will take place on Wednesday, April 24, 2019 from 6-8pm at Slought, and marks the opening of the permanent exhibition Moments Within the Movement as well as the Social Justice & Arts Integration Initiative.

Moments Within the Movement is a powerful permanent exhibition at Slought that showcases photographers Maurice Sorrell and Devin Allen, whose works are exhibited alongside one another. It explores the power and responsibility of social documentary photography from the civil rights era to today. Sorrell's work documents leading figures in the civil rights movement, while Allen's work highlights the power of citizen activism in an era of social media.

In their conversation, Allen and Renée (Sorrell's great-niece) will consider parallels between these two historical moments, the power of photography to capture social injustice, and the urgency of training young people to be the next generation of artists, activists, and citizens. Following the conversation, Devin will present several of his photographs and discuss his inspirations and journey as a self-taught photographer and the influences that have shaped him and his work. The program will conclude with a public Q&A.

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Devin Allen (1988-) is a widely acclaimed photographer and activist who was born and raised in West Baltimore. He gained national attention when his photograph of the Baltimore Uprising, which he shared through his personal Instagram account, was published on the cover of Time in May 2015 – only the third time the work of an amateur photographer had been featured. A Beautiful Ghetto, a visual story by Devin Allen about Freddie Gray's Baltimore and the rise of the New Activist, was exhibited at Slought in 2016 and published by Haymarket Books in 2017.

His photographs have also appeared in New York Magazine, The New York Times, the Washington Post, and Aperture, and are in the permanent collections of the National Museum of African American History & Culture, the Reginald F. Lewis Museum, and the Studio Museum in Harlem. He is the founder of Through Their Eyes, a youth photography educational program, and the winner of the 2017 Gordon Parks Foundation Fellowship.

Stephanie Renée is a multifaceted performer, writer, radio host, and curator. Her major label commercial recordings include the intro for Who Is Jill Scott (Hidden Beach/Sony) and interludes for Patti LaBelle's When A Woman Loves (MCA). She was recently the Program Director and a beloved presence on the airwaves with her shows The MOJO and The Source on WURD Radio, the only independent black talk radio station in the state of Pennsylvania. Renée also recently curated Photographic Memory (2018), an exhibition at Slought of archival imagery of her great-uncle, Maurice Sorrell, which subsequently traveled to the African American Museum in Philadelphia, the University of Pennsylvania, and other venues.