The High Museum of Art in Midtown is featuring one of its most thought-provoking pictorial exposes, which takes its title from Martin Luther King, Jr.’s final speech before his assignation in 1968.

The exhibition, titled “A Fire That No Water Could Put Out: Civil Rights Photography,” opens Nov. 4 and will run through May 27. It reflects the 50th anniversary of what a news release by the museum on the exhibition called 1968 “that tumultuous year in American history.”

The exhibition includes more than 40 photographic prints, which are drawn in large part from the museum’s collection of photographs which document the Civil Rights Movement, considered one of the most significant events that has helped shape American history.

In addition, the news release stated this exhibition is presented alongside works by contemporary photographers which illuminate the legacy of the movement.

Erin Nelson, the High’s curatorial assistant for photography, said while King’s assassination is often cited as the closing bookend of the Civil Rights Movement, “activism over the past 50 years has continued efforts to advance racial equality and justice in the United States.”

The exhibition includes some of the most powerful images of the High’s civil rights collection, which includes recent acquisitions. According to a news release, it “underscores photography’s pivotal role in chronicling the important moments which shaped our past and the current events and perspectives that will influence our future.”

The exhibition will be presented in the High’s Lucinda Weil Bunnen Gallery for Photography, where it is arranged in three sections which explore the era of King’s leadership, the year he was assassinated and contemporary reflections of  the enduring legacy of the Civil Rights Movement.

Some of the photographers whose works are featured in the exhibition include Gordon Parks, Danny Lyon and Charles Moore. One of the most poignant scenes is a photo of the march in Memphis that Coretta Scott King led just four days after her husband’s death.

For more information or to purchase tickets, visit


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