Impact Visuals

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Duration: Unknown, existed for about 15 years including most of the 1980s and early 1990s
Location: Brooklyn, New York, United States


Impact Visuals was a New York City-based cooperative photo agency dedicated to social documentary photography. Impact Visuals sold pictures taken of the anti-apartheid movement in the United States by independent photographers across the county. Impact Visuals also sold photographs taken of the struggles for independence in Namibia and against apartheid in South Africa. Impact Visuals distributed photographs from Afrapix, a collective of freelance photographers in South Africa operating between 1982-1992.

Organizational Archive


Title: Impact Visuals Photograph Collection
Time Span: n.d., 1964-2000 [bulk 1983-1999]
Media: 6.5 linear feet. Photographs, slides, negatives and some documentary material.
Description: Impact Visuals was a New York City-based cooperative photo agency dedicated to social documentary photography. Founded by Michael Kaufman, Impact Visuals operated for 15 years until shutting down in 2001. Photographs, slides and negatives primarily of South Africa and the anti-apartheid movement. Most of the images in this collection were obtained when Impact Visuals acquired defunct South African cooperative Afrapix's material. Afrapix was a collective, self-funded group of freelance photographers in South Africa operating between 1982-1992. A few additional images came from Southlight Photographic Agency. The collection consists of photographs, slides, and negatives, as well as a limited amount of supporting materials and publications. The vast majority of the material relates to South Africa. Other African nations include Namibia, Rwanda and Zaire (Congo). South Africa's first interracial elections in April 1994 are particularly well represented in the collection, as are the African National Congress (ANC), Nelson Mandela and Winnie Mandela, and National Party President F.W. De Klerk. Subjects other than politics include the environment, labor, economics, health, poverty, and cultural life. Abdul Shariff, one of the photographers who worked for Afrapix and later Impact Visuals, was killed while documenting an ANC event in January 1994. Shariff's curriculum vitae, contract with Impact Visuals, and correspondence with fellow photographer Ansell Horn document the working relationships of a South African photographer.
Housed At: University of Connecticut Libraries, Thomas J. Dodd Research Center, Archives & Special Collections
Location: 405 Babbidge Road, Unit 1205, Storrs, CT 06269-1205, United States
Catalog/Finding Aid: view
Restrictions: There are no access restrictions on this collection. Contact in reference advance. Permission to publish from these Papers must be obtained in writing from both the University of Connecticut Libraries and the owner(s) of the copyright.
Phone: (860) 486-4500
Related Website: http://www.lib.uconn.edu/online/research/speclib/ASC/index.html