Giving Me Life: A Visual Journey of African American Organ and Tissue Transplant Recipients is a groundbreaking photography and multimedia exhibition. The art exhibition opened at the African American Museum and Library at Oakland (AAMLO) on June 9, 2018 and was on display through August 31, 2018.

Through a series of black and white portraits taken by Bay Area social documentary photographer, Katie Sugarman, Giving Me Life depicts the visual testimonials of nine California Bay Area African American transplant recipients who have overcome incredible obstacles in their respective journeys toward health and wellness – all thanks to the gift of organ, eye, and tissue donation. The vision of Giving Me Life was borne of a desire to lay claim to the affirmation, #BlackLivesMatter.

The primary exhibit features two photographs and a short narrative of each recipient. Other elements include an audiovisual station that highlights compelling community perspectives from African Americans who champion the cause of organ and tissue donation locally, as well as samples of tools and resources connected to the donation process.

katie sugarman photographer

About Katie Sugarman

Katie Sugarman has an intimate appreciation for the Gift of Life made possible through organ and tissue donation. Fifteen years ago, her mother, Roz, received a life-saving heart transplant. Her mother is now healthy thriving and enjoying life to the fullest, playing tennis four times a week, traveling, and the ability to take deep breaths. Sugarman is an avid traveller, who lends her time and talent to a small non-profit that focuses on empowering Maasai girls and women though education and other projects. She believes in the power of photography to share important stories and empower others in the process.

Giving Me Life in the Media