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Upcoming Events

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A Louisiana Parlor:…

Aug 30 - Oct 11, 2015
This exhibition is in celebration of the acquisition of a superb Rococo Revival… more

Ashe Cultural Arts…

Aug 30 - Oct 4, 2015
Join us for Ashe to Amen: the Enduring Spirituality of People of African… more

Ashe Cultural Arts…

Aug 30 - Oct 4, 2015
Join us for Ashe to Amen: the Enduring Spirituality of People of African… more

COOLinary New Orleans…

Aug 30 - 31, 2015
It is going to be a delicious summer!  During the month of August, enjoy… more

Longue Vue House and…

Aug 30 - Oct 11, 2015
For the 10th Anniversary of the storm, Longue Vue will commemorate the revival… more

Louisiana SPCA’s…

Aug 30 - 31, 2015
In memory of the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, the Louisiana SPCA is… more

New Orleans Museum…

Aug 30 - 30, 2015
New Orleans Museum Month, now in its second year, is a collaboration between… more

New Orleans Museum of…

Aug 30 - Sep 7, 2015
Ten Years Gone brings together six artists whose work engages with the broad… more

New Orleans Saints vs…

Aug 30 - 30, 2015
The New Orleans Saints kickoff their first preseason home game in the… more

NOBA Hosts…

Aug 30 - Sep 26, 2015
The New Orleans Ballet Association (NOBA) in partnership with Chalmette… more

NOBA's tuition-free…

Aug 30 - Sep 25, 2015
Beginning this weekend, the NORDC/NOBA Center for Dance, along with other NOBA… more

Pass It On -The Past…

Aug 30 - 30, 2015
Liberation Nation and Beats & Brushstrokes present The Past We Inherit; the… more

The Foundation…

Aug 30 - 31, 2015
The Foundation Gallery is thrilled to present Botanical Explorations, new work… more

The Sweat Social…

Aug 30 - Dec 20, 2015
Designed for wellness travelers visiting New Orleans, the Sweat Social offers… more

FestiGals Presents…

Aug 31 - 31, 2015
Don't sit on the sidelines this football season! Come learn how to get in the… more

Tai Chi/Chi Kung

Aug 31 - 31, 2015
NOMA, in collaboration with the East Jefferson Wellness Center offers wellness… more

Maple Leaf Bar…

Sep 1 - 29, 2015
Join us for live entertainment featuring the Grammy Award winning ReBirth Brass… more

Pint Night

Sep 1 - 29, 2015
Join us every Tuesday at the Irish House for Pint Night.   more

The Historic New…

Sep 01, 2015 - Jan 09, 2016
The Historic New Orleans Collection marks the 10th anniversary of Hurricane… more

The Katrina Decade:…

Sep 01, 2015 - Jan 09, 2016
The Historic New Orleans Collection marks the 10th anniversary of Hurricane… more

A Louisiana Parlor:…

Aug 30 - Oct 11, 2015
This exhibition is in celebration of the acquisition of a superb Rococo Revival… 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