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In the Shadow of Wounded Knee | PHOTOGRAPHER: AARON HUEY

In the Shadow of Wounded Knee | PHOTOGRAPHER: AARON HUEY | PHOTOGRAPHERS | Scoop.it
After 150 years of broken promises, the Oglala Lakota people of the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota are nurturing their tribal customs, language, and beliefs. A rare, intimate portrait shows their resilience in the face of hardship. 

Almost every historical atrocity has a geographically symbolic core, a place whose name conjures up the trauma of a whole people: Auschwitz, Robben Island, Nanjing. For the Oglala Lakota of the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation that place is a site near Wounded Knee Creek, 16 miles northeast of the town of Pine Ridge. From a distance the hill is unremarkable, another picturesque tree-spotted mound in the creased prairie. But here at the mass grave of all those who were killed on a winter morning more than a century ago, it’s easy to believe that certain energies—acts of tremendous violence and of transcendent love—hang in the air forever and possess a forever half-life.

 

Alex White Plume, a 60-year-old Oglala Lakota activist, lives with his family and extended family on a 2,000-acre ranch near Wounded Knee Creek. White Plume’s land is lovely beyond any singing, rolling out from sage-covered knolls to creeks bruised with late summer lushness. From certain aspects, you can see the Badlands, all sun-bleached spires and scoured pinnacles. And looking another way, you can see the horizon-crowning darkness of the Black Hills of South Dakota.

 

One hot and humid day in early August, I drove out to interview White Plume in a screened outdoor kitchen he had just built for his wife. Hemp plants sprouted thickly all over their garden. “Go ahead and smoke as much as you like,” White Plume offered. “I always tell people that: Smoke as much as you want, but you won’t get very high.” The plants are remnants from a plantation of industrial hemp—low-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) Cannabis sativa—cultivated by the White Plume family in 2000.

Fuller text: http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2012/08/pine-ridge/fuller-text 
Photo report's insight:

Aaron Huey is a National Geographic photographer and a Contributing Editor for Harper's Magazine. He is based in Seattle, WA.

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LAST BEST HIDING PLACE | Photographer: Tim Richmond

LAST BEST HIDING PLACE | Photographer: Tim Richmond | PHOTOGRAPHERS | Scoop.it
Photo report's insight:

Tim Richmond‘s American West – depicted in Last Best Hiding Place – can be placed anywhere onto the continuum that has the myth at one end and the artist’s unique vision at the other end. It’s a place filled with characters and locations that manage to be specific and completely generic at the same time, with a rough, somewhat hurt, tenderness underneath. I can’t help but think that the photographer is very much aware of what he is taking pictures of, given there appears to be a balancing act at play: Every stereotype is depicted, to be subverted right away or elsewhere. There are cowboys, sure, but they have baby faces underneath their stubble.


Richmond’s West ends up throwing stereotypes and preconceived ideas back at us, reminding us that what we’d like to think of as real is really of our own choosing. What we find is what we’re looking for. Here, photography comes full circle, because it is always at least that: A quest for that, which we already know. And as long as we’re not deluding ourselves into thinking there’s more, we’re in good shape.

 

I’ve written many times that photography really only excels when it’s being done with its own limitations in mind. These limitations arise from the technical nature of the medium in more ways than one. The properties of the camera have as much to do with it as the fact that a photographer is pointing the camera into some direction, at something in the world.

 

A long time ago, photographers were able to point their cameras at the world, a world not weighed down by preconceived ideas and earlier photographs. Now, when you point your camera at the world, you’re really pointing it more at all those images in our minds than at the world itself.

The secret then is to make this work, to produce photographs that can still stand on their own, while acknowledging all the ones that came before them. Tim Richmond‘sLast Best Hiding Place does just that, and it does it well.

All photographs © and kindly provided by Tim Richmond 


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Jean-Marie Grange's curator insight, October 9, 2013 3:39 PM

Depressing America...

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The evasion studie | Fine art photographer: Stevens Brahms

The evasion studie | Fine art photographer: Stevens Brahms | PHOTOGRAPHERS | Scoop.it

These images were taken by American photographer Steven Brahms, for his project titled “The Evasion Studies”. Simply put they are dramatic run-for-your-life style portraits in rather unfavourable everyday places. A very simple idea and beautifully executed. In recent news Steven was one of the 2012 recipients of the Aaron Siskind Foundation — Individual Photographer’s Fellowship. Check out his work, it’s all gold.

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Masculinities | Photographer: Chad States

Masculinities | Photographer: Chad States | PHOTOGRAPHERS | Scoop.it

“Growing up as a gay man in the U.S. I have always been aware of how men were supposed to act and I judged myself against these ideas. Masculinity was always something that was attractive to me but when I tried to unpack what made someone masculine I found it hard to define. Masculinity seemed based on relativity and shifted in different circumstances and cultures. I wanted to investigate how others defined their own masculinity to try to create touchstone for the term.”

 

“I found most of my subjects through Craigslist, posting in multiple areas to try to cast as wide a net as possible. I would simply ask the question, “Are you masculine?” in the heading of the post. I would then invite myself over to the respondents home to photograph them. We would meet for the first time as strangers which required a lot of trust on both their part and mine. The people who were then willing to go through with the project were a small fraction of those who actually responded.

 

“The structure of the project created a special circumstance in which those who were still willing to participate had a strong need to have their own masculinity confirmed by the photograph. I would collaborate with the subjects on making the photograph. They would decide what to wear as well as how they wanted to construct themselves for the camera. I used a 4×5 camera only taking about 8-10 shots per sitting, so the poses and choices are very intentional on part of the sitter. The quotations are pulled from email exchanges before the shoot in which I ask them to tell me why they think they are masculine.”-

Photo report's insight:

Philadelphia-based photographer Chad States explores how one defines masculinity for themselves in a series of portraits created over two years. The answers are intriguing, the images equally so. We recently asked him a few questions about the project, entitled Masculinities.


 


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100 photos of Steve McCurry for freedom of information | Reporters sans frontières

100 photos of Steve McCurry for freedom of information | Reporters sans frontières | PHOTOGRAPHERS | Scoop.it

Reporters sans frontières is proud to open the pages of his Steve McCurry's new album and presenting 100 of his finest photographs taken in Afghanistan over the last thirty years.

 

REPORTERS WITHOUT BORDERS, FOR FREEDOM OF INFORMATION

Freedom of expression and of information will always be the world’s most important freedom. If journalists were not free to report the facts, denounce abuses and alert the public, how would we resist the problem of children-soldiers, defend women’s rights, or preserve our environment? In some countries, torturers stop their atrocious deeds as soon as they are mentioned in the media. In others, corrupt politicians abandon their illegal habits when investigative journalists publish compromising details about their activities. Still elsewhere, massacres are prevented when the international media focuses its attention and cameras on events.

Freedom of information is the foundation of any democracy. Yet almost half of the world’s population is still denied it.

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Fault Line - A portrait of East Austin...| Photographer: John H. Langmore

Fault Line - A portrait of East Austin...| Photographer: John H. Langmore | PHOTOGRAPHERS | Scoop.it

A Portrait of East Austin and the Universal Story of Gentrification

East Austin is not the blank canvas developers might see. It’s like a Picasso—complex, disturbing when viewed from certain angles, beautiful when viewed from others. The purpose of this series is to reveal— and more importantly, to celebrate—the beauty, the history, the charm, and the perseverance of the people of East Austin and all the neighborhoods like it that the vagaries of time will render unrecognizable to future generations. — John Langmore, March 2009

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Portraitlandia | Photographer: Kirk Crippens

Portraitlandia | Photographer: Kirk Crippens | PHOTOGRAPHERS | Scoop.it

When Kirk Crippens went on a five-week residency at Newspace Center for Photography in Portland, Ore., he welcomed the opportunity to shift gears a bit. The residency allowed him to work without distraction from life’s daily grind, and he was able to take a break from his long-term project about the recession toward something more whimsical. The result was a portrait-based series, “Portraitlandia,” in which he turned his camera on the people of Portland.

 

Although he was only in Portland for about a month, Crippens spent close to a year preparing for the residency, acting a bit like a tourist and scouting out possible portrait subjects through word of mouth. He decided to follow his subjects’ lead regarding locations for the shoot, and he asked them also to give him two hours of their time to create the portrait—an unusually long commitment for Crippens. “I wanted to do something that had authenticity while being aware I was new to Portland and didn’t have the time to build the relationships I would normally have,” he said.

 

Crippens also decided to work outside of his comfort zone and shot the entire series with a 4-by-5 view camera using film. It was the first time for him using the camera, and he practiced using it before heading to Portland. He said it allowed him to slow down his process, and it broke the ice a bit with his subjects who were curious about the camera. “Working in a slow, analog medium really leant itself to having an opportunity to get to know the folks,” he said. “It gave an expansiveness to their sessions.”

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Theatrical | Photographer: Philip-Lorca diCorcia

Theatrical | Photographer: Philip-Lorca diCorcia | PHOTOGRAPHERS | Scoop.it

DiCorcia alternates between informal snapshots and iconic quality staged compositions that often have a baroque theatricality.

Using a carefully planned staging, he takes everyday occurrences beyond the realm of banality, trying to inspire in his picture's spectators an awareness of the psychology and emotion contained in real-life situations. His work could be described as documentary photography mixed with the fictional world of cinema and advertising, which creates a powerful link between reality, fantasy and desire.

 

During the late 1970s, during diCorcia's early career, he used to situate his friends and family within fictional interior tableaus, that would make the viewer think that the pictures were spontaneous shots of someone's everyday life, when they were in fact carefully staged and planned in beforehand. He would later start photographing random people in urban spaces all around the world. When in Berlin, Calcutta, Hollywood, New York, Rome and Tokyo, he would often hide lights in the pavement, which would illuminate a random subject in a special way, often isolating them from the other people in the street.

His photographs would then give a sense of heightened drama to the passers-by accidental poses, unintended movements and insignificant facial expressions.

 

Even if sometimes the subject appears to be completely detached to the world around him, diCorcia has often used the city of the subject's name as the title of the photo, placing the passers-by back into the city's anonymity.Each of his series, Hustlers, Streetwork, Heads, A Storybook Life, and Lucky Thirteen, can be considered progressive explorations of diCorcia’s formal and conceptual fields of interest. Besides his family, associates and random people he has also photographed personas already theatrically enlarged by their life choices, such as the pole dancers in his latest series.

 

Photo report's insight:

Philip-Lorca diCorcia  is an American photographer. He studied at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Afterwards diCorcia attended Yale University where he received a Master of Fine Arts in Photography in 1979. He now lives and works in New York, and teaches at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut.

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Passenger Side Window | Photographer: Johnny Tergo

Passenger Side Window | Photographer: Johnny Tergo | PHOTOGRAPHERS | Scoop.it

Out of all the clever photo hacks we’ve seen, this one may be the most creative. Johnny Tergo, a Los Angeles photographer, has built an over-the-top camera and lighting setup in his Chevy Silverado that he uses to take studio-quality portraits of pedestrians.

The photos document moments that can’t be shot any other way. Try lugging studio lights down the street and capturing the same scenes. Tergo, 35, says he commutes a lot as a freelancer he wanted to exploit his time behind the wheel.

 

“What I’ve tried to do is bring the studio lighting aspect to everyday real life on the streets,” he says.

Inside the truck on the passenger side, Tergo bolted a platform that holds a Canon 1D Mark IV with a 16-35 mm lens, a computer, an iPad mini and a studio light. Outside near the tailgate he’s attached a second studio light and reflector to a boom that extends 10 feet above the ground. Two gas generators in the bed of the truck pump out 4,000 watts for the lights, including a third that’s rigged under the bumper (photos of his setup are included at the end of the gallery).

As Tergo drives in neighborhoods with high foot traffic, he sets his exposure using an app called Capture Pilot on the iPad mini. He also adjusts the strobes for the ambient light using the strobe controls positioned in the cab. When he spots a subject, he drives around the block while he frames up the shot.

He’s learned a few tricks to get the best results. He leads moving subjects by pulling forward slightly, waiting for them to enter the frame. He’s also not above honking the horn and pretending to be angry with another driver to get people to look toward the camera.

 

The whole apparatus is triggered with a PocketWizard. Images are sent to Tergo’s dash-mounted iPhone via on-board wifi so he can review them. If he likes the photo he moves on. If not he tries to get another frame off before the subject figures out what’s going on. He says on a normal day he takes between 40 and 50 pictures with about five that are actually usable.

Some people are not so stoked to get their photo taken without consent. Tergo says there’s been a lot of yelling.

“A lot of people think I’m up to something nefarious,” he says. “But there have also been a couple times where someone has been really cool and I’ve pulled over and explained what I was doing.”

Tergo wants to add a second truck and more lights to the mix. Ideally, he’d have the extra truck pull up somewhere off to the side or behind the subject so it could uses it’s flashes as a rim light, which would help define the body of the person in the frame.

“I enjoy the rigging as much as the image making and anything that I find that will take it to the next level, I add it,” he says. “I don’t want to stop with good enough, I want it to be awesome.”

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The Nu Project: Women of North America I | Photographer: Matt Blum

The Nu Project: Women of North America I | Photographer: Matt Blum | PHOTOGRAPHERS | Scoop.it

Matt Blum started “The Nu Project” with the idea that women of all shapes and sizes deserve to be photographed beautifully as fine art nudes. His subjects were volunteers through word-of-mouth or Craigslist–they came with their stories, their successes and failures, their scars, their survival of abusive relationships, their tales of triumph over body image–and he photographed them. These days the collection continues to grow; over 150 women (some with their partners) have participated, most in their own homes.

Photo report's insight:

"Thank you for being here. The Nu Project is a series of honest nudes of women from all over the world. The project began in 2005 and has stayed true to the original vision: no professional models, minimal makeup and no glamour. The focus of the project has been and continues to be the subjects and their personalities, spaces, insecurities and quirks.

 

To date, over 150 women across North and South America have participated in the project.  Without their courage, confidence and trust, none of this would have been possible. We are so thankful for their willingness to open their homes to us.

 

If you’d like to get involved as a contributor to our fine art book, you can find the information to the right.  If you’d like to sign up for a shoot, please visit the participation page for more information."- Matt Blum

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Elementarz | Photographer: KAROLINA KARLIC

Elementarz | Photographer: KAROLINA KARLIC | PHOTOGRAPHERS | Scoop.it

Karolina Karlic is a Los Angeles-based conceptual artist. Her work is tied to the idea of the West: road trips, car culture, industry, economic ups and downs, and the experience of the migrant. Her series “Elementarz” (Polish for “Primer”) shuttles between the familiar American photographic road trip and her reexamination of parts of Poland where her family comes from and to which her father, after years working as an emigre engineer in the Detroit auto industry, was dispatched to investigate new sites for the next generation car plants. The work weaves together family, surrogate relatives, religion, nostalgia, Motown music, manufactured ideologies and other themes.

Karlic is a recipient of the Guggenheim Fellowship.  She continues to explore representations of American culture, industry, labor, and the immigrant experience in a current work-in-progress that focuses on an American oil boom town. – Artist statement courtesy of Karolina Karlic

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