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Internationally acclaimed photographer, Dana Gluckstein, is known for her powerful portraits of Indigenous Peoples around the world. DIGNITY’s new edition provides urgency and a contemporary focus to the worldwide movement against racial injustice in which DIGNITY continues to play an important part.
In DIGNITY’S Foreword, the Nobel Laureate, Archbishop Desmond Tutu writes, “The Indigenous Peoples of the world have a gift to give that the world needs desperately, this reminder that we are made for harmony, for interdependence. If we are ever truly to prosper, it will be only together.”
DIGNITY, a three-time winner of the International Photography Awards, is a collection of iconic photographs by Dana Gluckstein which honors Indigenous Peoples worldwide. Gluckstein, whether photographing a Haitian healer or a San Bushman elder, succeeds in distilling the universality of experience that links us all without diminishing the dignity of the individual. DIGNITY includes more than 100 of Gluckstein's black-and white duotone portraits, made over three decades. The photographs express the theme of tribes in transition by capturing a fleeting period of world history where traditional and contemporary cultures collide.
DIGNITY's power, artistry, and impassion advocate for the United States to take action against rape and assault of Native American and Alaskan Native women. “DIGNITY is a call to action against racism,” states Gluckstein. In the introduction, Native American Faithkeeper Oren R. Lyons discusses the roots of racism in the medieval Catholic Church and its Doctrine of Discovery that condemned Indigenous Peoples as subhuman to be treated like animals – the justification for their conquerors to steal land and enslave the inhabitants.
The first edition of DIGNITY, released in association with Amnesty International’s 50th anniversary in 2010, helped create a turning point for the Obama administration to adopt the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples - a historic milestone. The book generated thousands of letters to the administration and brought critical media attention to the plight of Indigenous Peoples. The UN Declaration, whose full text is reproduced in DIGNITY, is the most comprehensive global statement of the measures every government must enact to ensure the survival and well-being of Indigenous Peoples. It has empowered a worldwide movement of Indigenous Peoples to assert stewardship of the land, air and water. They are a beacon for all humanity.
About the Author:
Dana Gluckstein has photographed iconic figures including Nelson Mandela, Mikhail Gorbachev, Desmond Tutu, and Muhammad Ali, as well as award-winning advertising campaigns for clients such as Apple and Toyota. Her portraits are held in the permanent collections of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, and the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture. Gluckstein’s international museum exhibition, DIGNITY: Tribes in Transition, presented at the United Nations in Geneva and has been touring European and U.S. museums since 2011. She addressed the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland in 2013 on how art can impact the state of the world. DIGNITY is a three-time winner of the International Photography Awards. Gluckstein graduated from Stanford University, where she studied psychology, painting, and photography, and realized the power of images to shape consciousness. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and has two children.
Pam Kingfisher (Cherokee) is a longtime advocate for Native women’s rights who has successfully advocated for Emergency Contraception for Native women, policy change regarding sexual violence, and trained many tribal communities about sexual assault and sex trafficking. She lives in Oklahoma.
Tarah Demant is the Director of the Gender, Sexuality, and Identity Program at Amnesty International USA, where she leads the organization’s work on women’s rights, LGBTI rights, the rights of Indigenous Peoples, and sexual and reproductive rights. She lives in Washington, DC.