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Shot of the Day: This Image of MLK’s Funeral Captures Racial Divisions in 1968

An artist breaks down the faces in the crowd.

1 Substance

If you imagined that a wide cross-section of Americans joined together to mourn the loss of Martin Luther King, think again. Chilean artist Alfredo Jaar broke down an iconic photograph of the crowd at the murdered civil rights leader’s 1968 funeral, placing black dots over the African American faces and red dots over the white faces to make a point more effectively than words can.

“When I started looking at the shocking absence of white faces, I couldn’t believe it,” Jaar told the Washington Post, “so I started looking for a way to represent this in a graphic and almost funny way… This was a way for me to express my outrage to what these images reveal.”