‘The Human Snapshot” draws upon a conference of the same name organized by the LUMA Foundation and Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College that took place in Arles, France, in 2011. The conference contributions and subsequent essays examine contemporary forms of humanism and universalism as they circulate and are produced in art and photography. The look toward these two terms stems from theorist Ariella Azoulay’s research on the seminal exhibition ”The Family of Man,” first installed at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 1955, which she frames as a lens through which to view universalism at play. These values have been under conceptual assault in recent years, yet they continue to proliferate–even through the visual arts, where humanism and universalism are customarily dismissed. ”The Human Snapshot” takes these themes and wrestles with their application in the use of photography, the exhibition format, contemporary democracy, human rights discourse, and the power of the image at large.