Alan Kotok, September 02, 2020
Last October, freelance writer Skip Kaltenheuser visited Wuhan, China, when a clear sunny day instead of the usual haze brought crowds of residents into the streets. Kaltenheuser captured photos of those crowded outdoor venues, with everyone unaware that in a few weeks Wuhan would become synonymous with the global Covid-19 pandemic.
Those photos are now on display in the 21st annual National Press Club members photo exhibit.
The exhibit is the Club's annual celebration of visual story-telling. This year, 49 Club members are taking part, displaying 173 images with descriptions and stories in the show's catalog. Because of the pandemic, the exhibit is available only online, although the Club's Photography Team is ready to return the show to big-screen monitors in the 13th floor lobby when conditions permit.
The exhibit's official opening reception, also held virtually this year, is set for 5 p.m. Friday, Sept. 4. Details are available online.
The pandemic figures into many of the images this year. Photos from first-time exhibitor Christine Schiffner show empty Washington streets and Metro stations during the lockdown, while Jan Zastrow displays a deserted Senate office building, and Nancy Hart shows a shuttered Rockefeller Center bar in New York. The collection has several pandemic-inspired family photos, with Craig Shearman presenting a completely masked family portrait, and Eeda and Derek Wallbank showing their kids acting a little silly after the "circuit breaker," Singapore's term for lockdown, is lifted.
Several photos focus on pre-pandemic pleasures, including Denny Gainer's shot from country singer Wynonna Judd's last concert (pictured above), first-time exhibitor Lou Michaels's photo of minor league baseball in St. Paul, Minnesota, and Al Teich's photo of closely packed bicycle racers in Waukesha, Wisconsin.
While the exhibit can be seen on mobile devices, the images are best viewed on a laptop or desktop computer.