Contact High: A Visual History of Hip-Hop

A Program featuring MOPOP (Museum of Pop Culture)

Program Hosted By

About this Program

Museum of Pop Culture in Seattle, WA presents Contact High: A Visual History of Hip-Hop. The exhibition is open through January 2024. 

Contact High explores four decades of photography, from the late 1970s to today, documenting a revolution not just in music, but in politics, race relations, fashion, and culture. Through more than 170 iconic images of hip-hop's most influential artists including contact sheets that give us a rare glimpse into the creative process of a photo session. Contact High examines the evolution of hip-hop, connecting us with the experiences, identities, and places that have shaped the world’s most popular music genre.   

The exhibition features exclusive images of some of hip hop’s biggest influences, including Missy Elliot, Jay-Z, Queen Latifah, Kanye West, and Tupac Shakur.  

We see how artists like The Notorious B.I.G, Aaliyah, Wu-Tang Clan, Sir Mix-A-Lot, and so many more, define themselves to the public.  

Contact High explores Hip-hop throughout the United States, including the regional cultures that flourished in different parts of the US, from the Pacific Northwest to the Midwest, to the South.  

In addition to photographs, artifacts from MoPOP’s permanent collection such as early rap battle fliers, Tupac Shakur manuscripts, Flavor magazines, and costumes from Sha-rock, The Notorious B.I.G., and MF DOOM add to our understanding of hip-hop culture.  

Access to Contact High is included with museum general admission. You can purchase tickets and learn more about the exhibition at 

Exhibition made possible by the Annenberg Space for Photography + International Center of Photography. Curator Vikki Tobak, Creative Director Fab 5 Freddy. Based on the Book CONTACT HIGH: A Visual History of Hip-Hop by Vikki Tobak. 

May 28, 2023, 05:00 PM

05:00 PM - 08:00 PM

About The Speakers



Museum of Pop Culture


Museum of Pop Culture (MoPOP)

325 5th Ave N, Seattle


Main Sponsor

Queens Public Library



In 2021, the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) awarded $425.7 million through grantmaking, research and policy development, to advance, support, and empower America's museums, libraries, and related organizations.

Main Sponsor