The Family of Man was presented at the MoMA in New York in 1955. It was created during the cold-war era with the support of the United States Information Agency, generously funded by the Rockefeller family and sponsored by Coca-Cola. It traveled through 37 countries in both sides of the iron wall until 1961 and was visited by more than 9 million people. In 2003 the Family of Man photographic collection was added to UNESCO’s Memory of the World Register in recognition of its historical value and it is permanently displayed at Clervaux Castle in Luxembourg. Utopia or propaganda, this exhibition still keeps on intriguing and inspiring today’s art critics, artists and thinkers. If The Family of Man is still relevant today it is because it incarnates both the utopia of a borderless world beyond the war inclined nation state model, and the imperialist danger of such an endeavour. Taking The Family of Man as inspiration we propose you to work collectively on creating an alternate collection of 503 images under the title of ‘The Insurgent Family’. In the classes to come we will reflect on the shape that our visual essay can take, think of a publication, an exhibition, or any other presentational form.
2nd Year Graphic Design Semester 1, Year 2018/2019 Gerrit Rietveld Academie Amsterdam.