Stephen Shames (b. 1947)


Stephen Shames has worked as a photojournalist for over forty-five years, using his photography to raise awareness of social issues, with a particular focus on race and child poverty. Working to promote social change, Shames had documented


From 1967 to 1973, while still a student at University of California, Berkley, Shames had unprecedented access to the legendary Black Panther Party. The Party, revered by some and vilified by others, burst onto the scene with a revolutionary agenda for social change and the empowerment of African-Americans.


Shames captured not only the public face of The Black Panther Party — street demonstrations, protests, and militant posturing — but also unscripted behind-the-scenes moments, such as private meetings held in the Party headquarters, scenes from the Panther schools and free meal programs, Huey P. Newton at home, and Bobby Seale at work on his mayoral campaign in Oakland. 


Shames creates award-winning photo essays on social issues for magazines, books, foundations, advocacy organizations, and museums, and in 1986 he testified about child poverty to the United States Senate. His foundation, LEAD Uganda, locates forgotten children, helps foster their innate talents, and molds them into leaders. In 2010 Shames was named a Purpose Prize Fellow for his work helping these AIDs orphans, former child soldiers, and children living in refugee camps


Selected Exhibitions:
Stephen Shames: Bronx Boys- Steven Kasher Gallery, New York
Stephen Shames: Childhood and Youth- Steven Kasher Gallery, New York
The Black Panthers: Vintage Prints by Stephen Shames- Steven Kasher Gallery, New York
The Black Panthers: Photographs by Stephen Shames- Aperture, New York
Dads- Open Society Institute,  New York & Washington, DC
9/11- University of the Arts,  Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
The Black Panther Party - University of California, Graduate School of Journalism, Berkeley, California. 


Selected Publications:
Bronx Boys, University of Texas Press, October 15, 2014
The Black Panthers, Aperture, July 15, 2006