Hackney Museum presents Growing Up Black – a photographic exhibition by Dennis Morris

A unique and poignant collection of photographs depicting the West Indian community in the 1960s and 1970s goes on display at Hackney Museum next Friday (October 2).

What makes this collection: Growing Up Black - even more rooted in local culture - is that their creator, internationally acclaimed rock photographer Dennis Morris, best known as Bob Marley s photographer, grew up in Hackney and first discovered photography at church in Dalston.

Growing Up Black features some of his earliest work and is an insightful visual record of the world he grew up in, taken of friends, family and strangers, at church, social events and on the streets, and he has donated this collection to Hackney Museum.

Dennis said: “I spend a lot of time traveling abroad, and when I return to London, from my travels, I always hear horror stories about black on black killings. I donated the pictures to give young people the chance to see how lucky they really are: compared to when I was growing up."

Images range from ‘Mother’s Pride’ to ‘Family In Room’ , which reveals the cramped, but typical living conditions experienced by many.

Dennis says: “In those days, getting a Council house was a luxury, These images should give people a reference point in how far they have really reached.”

Cllr Nargis Khan, Hackney Council lead member for Community Services said: “We are extremely proud that Dennis chose to donate these photographs to the Museum. We can now offer local people the chance to see how life was for the previous generation.”

Growing Up Black is a free exhibition and will be shown at Hackney Museum from Friday 2 October 2009 until 23 January 2010.

Photo caption: Sista Cool © Dennis Morris For more images or information about this press release please contact Karyn Michael, Media Officer, email: or telephone: 020 8356 3261.

Notes to editors

1) Dennis Morris is available for interviews. Please contact Karyn Michael to arrange.
2) Growing Up Black is part of Hackney’s programme for Black History Month 2009. For more information visit: