Category: VII Stories

“Driftless”

by Danny Wilcox Frazier

In Driftless, Danny Wilcox Frazier’s dramatic black-and-white photographs portray a changing Midwest of vanishing towns and transformed landscapes. As rural economies fail, people and resources are migrating to the coasts and cities, as though the heart of America were being emptied. Frazier’s arresting photographs take us into Iowa’s abandoned places and illuminate the lives of those people who stay behind and continue to live there: young people at leisure, fishermen on the Mississippi, veterans on Memorial Day, Amish women playing cards, as well as more recent arrivals, Lubavitcher Hasidic Jews at prayer and Latinos at work in the fields. Frazier’s camera finds these newcomers while it also captures activities that seemingly have gone on forever: harvesting and hunting, celebrating and socializing, praying and surviving.

Poetic and dark but illuminated with flashes of insight, this collection of photographs is a portrait of contemporary rural Iowa, but it is also more than that. It shows what is happening in many rural and out-of-the-way communities all over the United States, where people find ways to get by in the wake of closing factories and the demise of family farms. Taken by a true insider who has lived in Iowa his entire life, Frazier’s photographs are rich in emotion and give expression to the hopes and desires of the people who remain, whose needs and wants are complicated by the economic realities remaking rural America. – Alexa Dilworth, Center for Documentary Studies, Duke University

“My America” by Christopher Morris

My America

“My America”

by Christopher Morris

Christopher Morris produced My America while covering the first and second administrations of U.S. President George W. Bush for Time Magazine. Over the past five years, while taking photographs from his vantage point as a correspondent close to the center of American power, Morris documented a personal vision in these photographs that reflects an America at the intersection of patriotism and control, politics and devotion.

“Bedrooms of the Fallen” by Ashley Gilbertson

The bedroom of marine Cpl. Christopher G. Scherer, 21, in East Northport, N.Y. Scherer was killed by a sniper on July 21, 2007 in Karmah, Iraq.

“Bedrooms of the Fallen”

by Ashley Gilbertson

These bedrooms once belonged to men and women who died fighting in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. These fallen men and women were blown up by IEDs, RPGs, hand grenades and suicide bombers. They were shot down in ambushes and by snipers. They died in helicopters, in humvees and in tanks. It all took place thousands of miles away from home, and the country they fought to defend.

The purpose of this project is to honor these fallen – not simply as soldiers, marines, airmen and seamen, but as sons, daughters, sisters and brothers – and to remind us that before they fought, they lived, and they slept, just like us, at home.

This series, along with an additional set of photographs from other NATO allies was published by The University of Chicago Press in 2014.

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