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Upcoming Events

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“Awash with Color:…

Apr 29 - May 21, 2016
Join us at the Historic New Orleans Collection for the new exhibition… more

11th Annual Backbeat…

Apr 29 - 29, 2016
Join your friends in the New Orleans Botanical Garden for live music featuring… more

Backbeat Jazzfest…

Apr 29 - 29, 2016
Join us for Big Sam's Funky Nation. more

Backbeat Jazzfest…

Apr 29 - 29, 2016
Join us for Kermit Ruffins. more

Backbeat Jazzfest…

Apr 29 - 29, 2016
Join us for the Mike Dillon Band. more

Backbeat Jazzfest…

Apr 29 - 29, 2016
Join us for the Stoogies Brass Band. more

City Park Presents -…

Apr 29 - May 1, 2016
Join us in the New Orleans Botanical Garden in New Orleans City Park for City… more

David Hansen's Garden…

Apr 29, 2016
Since 2006, Hansen's Garden District Jazz Trio has performed every night at… more

DISNEY ON ICE…

Apr 29 - May 1, 2016
The celebration of the century comes alive in Disney On Ice celebrates 100… more

Disney on Ice: 100…

Apr 29 - May 1, 2016
Disney On Ice celebrates 100 Years of Magic! The monumental ice skating… more

House of Blues…

Apr 29 - Dec 30, 2016
Every Friday join us in the Voodoo Garden for live music, beer and drink… more

Irivin Mayfield Jazz…

Apr 29 - 29, 2016
Join us at The Irvin Mayfield Jazz Playhouse at the Royal Sonesta Hotel for… more

Irvin Mayfield Jazz…

Apr 29 - 29, 2016
Join us at The Irvin Mayfield Jazz Playhouse at the Royal Sonesta Hotel for… more

New Orleans Jazz &…

Apr 29 - May 1, 2016
Jazz Fest is the celebration of the unique culture and heritage of New Orleans… more

New Orleans Photo…

Apr 29 - May 29, 2016
The New Orleans Photo Alliance (NOPA), is proud to be the first venue to … more

Saenger Theatre…

Apr 29 - 30, 2016
This all-star event pays tribute to The Band's milestone final concert through… more

The Historic New…

Apr 29 - May 7, 2016
In commemoration of the 100th anniversary of World War I, The Historic New… more

The Irish House -…

Apr 29 - 29, 2016
Join us at the Irish House for Aaron Lopez-Barrantes. more

The New Mastersounds…

Apr 29 - 30, 2016
The New Mastersounds + Special Guests return to NOLA for two LATE NIGHT shows.… more

THIRD MAN RECORDS…

Apr 29 - 29, 2016
With Viva L'American Death Ray, Buck Biloxi and the Fucks, The Planchettes,… more

“Awash with Color:…

Apr 29 - May 21, 2016
Join us at the Historic New Orleans Collection for the new exhibition… 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