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Upcoming Events

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"Mysterious…

Nov 22 - 22, 2014
You are invited to the Mysterious Wisterias Plantation for an evening of music… more

"Prospect.3: Notes…

Nov 22, 2014 - Jan 25, 2015
Prospect New Orleans, the International Contemporary Art Biennial,  will… more

• Screening of “These…

Nov 22 - 22, 2014
THNOC's free seven-part film series presented in conjunction with the… more

Andrew Jackson: Hero…

Nov 22, 2014 - Mar 29, 2015
THNOC's exhibition tracks Jackson's rise from humble beginnings to immortality… more

Boesman and Lena

Nov 22 - 23, 2014
American Theatre Project of New Orleans returns to Ashé Cultural Arts… more

Celebration in the…

Nov 22 - 22, 2014
Please join us for our inaugural holiday event created just for young adults -… more

Digital Youth…

Nov 22 - 22, 2014
Throughout the month of November, participating P.3 venue, The Ogden Museum of… more

Family Workshop: Navy…

Nov 22 - 22, 2014
Whether in the Atlantic or the Pacific, it was the US Navy's job to control the… more

Finckel and Mozart

Nov 22 - 22, 2014
Guest conductor Markand Thakar leads the LPO and internationally-acclaimed… more

Free Family Day:…

Nov 22 - 22, 2014
This family celebration, inspired by the work of Jean-Michel Basquiat, will… more

Garfunkel & Oates

Nov 22 - 22, 2014
This California based folk duo incorporates comedy into a traditional folk… more

Growing Gardeners:…

Nov 22 - 22, 2014
Introduce your little green thumbs to the world of gardening! The Botanical… more

Le Petit Theatre…

Nov 22 - 23, 2014
This swashbuckling prequel to Peter Pan will have you and your family hooked… more

Mistletoe Marketplace…

Nov 22 - 23, 2014
Kickoff Mistletoe Marketplace in the French Quarter at 4 p.m. on Thursday,… more

Relient K-MMHMM 10th…

Nov 22 - 22, 2014
Relient K is an alternative rock band that was formed in 1998 in Canton Ohio.… more

Rivertown Theaters…

Nov 22 - 22, 2014
Rivertown Theaters for the Performing Arts is proud to present the Tony… more

Smoothie King Center…

Nov 22 - 23, 2014
Deep within a forest, at the summit of a volcano, exists an extraordinary world… more

THE GUANTÁNAMO PUBLIC…

Nov 22 - 26, 2014
This traveling exhibit examines the history of the U.S. naval base in… more

The Historic New…

Nov 22 - 22, 2014
Join us for a free screening of  "These Amazing Shadows" (2011),… more

The Mysterious…

Nov 22 - 23, 2014
You are invited to the Mysterious Wisterias Plantation for an evening of music… more

"Mysterious…

Nov 22 - 22, 2014
You are invited to the Mysterious Wisterias Plantation for an evening of music… more

Tonic of Wildness: Photographs by John Bentham

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Tonic of Wildness: Photographs by John Bentham

Opening Reception: Saturday February 22, 2014, 6 - 9 pm
Exhibition through March 29, 2014

 

The Foundation Gallery
608 Julia Street
New Orleans, LA 70130

 

John Bentham documents various social groups in his photographs, depicting individuals from an array of backgrounds in their environments. His investigation into human behavior has been a lifelong pursuit that offers an intimate perspective into the lives of his subjects. Bentham also extends his practice to landscapes and details that complete the photographic stories and provide color and texture to the narratives he portrays. The artist's humanity toward his subjects is evident in his approach: at once insightful, personal, and frank.

Throughout his career, Bentham has focused on subcultures, including burlesque dancers, drag queens, bikers, and roller derby teams. Often these series develop over several years, and the artist fosters close relationships with his subjects, allowing for an inside view into their worlds. The series of works featured in this exhibition present a range of photographs, taken from 2012 through the present, that were inspired by Bentham's move from New York City to rural upstate New York in the summer of 2012. After over two decades of living in New York City, Bentham found the dramatic change from the busyness of urban life to the slower pace of the small town a compelling subject to tackle. The resulting images-a group of participants at a local truck pull; a lone rig parked in a lot outside Utica-faithfully represent the milieu in which the artist operates and lend an experiential, "being there" quality to the moment depicted.

Drawing from a rich tradition of documentary photographers such as Henri Cartier-Bresson, Diane Arbus, Robert Frank, and Bruce Davidson, Bentham approaches his subjects with minimal technical intervention. In our age of digital manipulation, it is refreshing to see a photograph that is not heavily imbued with falsely saturated colors and effects-one that instead depicts what is essentially true through the lens of the artist's own perspective.

How can an image be sympathetic, humorous, critical, and poetic at the same time? That is Bentham's gift. Somehow he manages to capture all these qualities with an effortlessness that belies the complexity of his subjects. His approach to the people and places he photographs does not endeavor to simplify or qualify their lives. Rather, these images present an often relatable perspective as they document the peculiarities of social behavior. As he has done in his other work, Bentham here uses the camera to observe and record while he becomes embedded within the culture he visually explores.

As Thoreau wrote, we need "the tonic of wildness"-moments never before seen in a particular way, places never before defined with such clarity. Through this new body of work, Bentham delves into the dynamic and mysterious relationships between people and their environment, a journey that is endlessly fascinating and unhaltingly original.

 

The Foundation Gallery
608 Julia Street
New Orleans, LA 70130
Telephone: 504-568-0955
www.foundationgallerynola.com
Hours: 11-4 Tues & Wed, 11-6 Thurs-Sat

Opening Reception: Saturday February 22, 2014, 6 - 9 pm
Exhibition through March 29, 2014

 

Proceed from this exhibition will benefit the Treme Market Branch, New Orleans
www.trememarketbranch.com