Youths follow in 'Teenie' footsteps
A photo of the New Granada Theater on Centre Avenue, Hill District, by Tyrell Hughes, one of the youths who participated in the "One Shot" contest, is one of the 50 finalists among hundreds of submissions.
A photograph by Geor-Shay Johnson, a participant in the "One Shot" contest.
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Legacy generally refers to what is left behind, but another important aspect is what it inspires. Charles "Teenie" Harris' legacy was given new life recently by hundreds of Pittsburgh youth who, having learned of Harris' accomplishments, picked up cameras and headed out to document daily life around them.
Fifty of the photographs they took are featured in the "One Shot Teenie Harris Photo Contest" exhibition that accompanies "Documenting Our Past: The Teenie Harris Archive Project, Part Three." Both open Saturday at Carnegie Museum of Art.
The contest was initiated by Jimmy Cvetic, a retired Allegheny County policeman and leader of the "Gathering of Peace" antiviolence initiative of the Police Athletic League. The aim was to offer creative and constructive alternatives to violence for at-risk youth. It was co-sponsored by the Housing Authority of the city of Pittsburgh.
"One Shot" was the nickname given Harris by the late Mayor David L. Lawrence in recognition of the photographer's ability to capture his subject with one shot.
More than 1,000 disposable cameras were given to almost 500 children aged 6 to 18 years.
A Housing Authority committee narrowed submissions down, and a Carnegie committee chose the winning finalists.
"Photo Contest" continues through Nov. 1. Some contest winners will speak at the Carnegie July 23. Information: 412-622-3131 or www.cmoa.org.
First Published July 15, 2009 12:00 am