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GROUP FOR MUTUAL IMPROVEMENT - JORDAN BAUMGARTEN

GROUP FOR MUTUAL IMPROVEMENT - JORDAN BAUMGARTEN

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The black and white photographs in The Group For Mutual Improvement were taken in a vacant lot behind photographer Jordan Baumgarten’s home in Philadelphia. Over a period of 10 years, Baumgarten and his neighbours spent much of their time together in this lot. His book is a document of these gatherings.

The title is drawn from the Junto, also known as the Leather Apron Club— a diverse group of individuals Benjamin Franklin brought together in colonial era Philadelphia for the purpose of mutual improvement. They would gather in a tavern to debate questions of morals, politics, current events, philosophy, and local businesses. Baumgarten’s group was much less formal but the discussions no less vital.

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