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The Gallery Scene

Posted by Emily Sweeney  September 6, 2008 04:27 PM

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Some early work of rock-n-roll photographer Ron Pownall is on now display at the Panopticon Gallery in Kenmore Square.

Before Pownall made a career of snapping iconic images of musicians (i.e. The Rolling Stones, David Bowie, Elton John, et al.), he worked as a cub news photographer for the Chicago Tribune. One of his early assignments was covering the 1968 Democratic Convention, and when rioting broke out in Grant Park, he captured some dramatic moments on black-and-white film.

PANOPTICON_PownallPhotoExhibit.jpg

Anti-war protester confronts National Guardsmen at Grant Park, Chicago, August 28, 1968
© Ron Pownall, courtesy of Panopticon Gallery

Pownall found himself in the middle of the chaos on Aug. 28, 1968, and he stayed there for hours, shooting roll upon roll of film.

“I had long hair, but also had press credentials from Mayor Richard Daley’s office,” said Pownall. “The police didn’t know what to make of me, but those credentials made me off-limits to their clubs.”

His photo exhibit, "The Whole World Was Watching: Images from the 1968 Chicago Riots", will run until Oct. 6. The opening reception will be held on Thursday, Sept. 18, from 5 to 7 p.m.

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