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7th Annual Pumpkin…

Oct 5 - 31, 2015
The Lutcher/Gramercy Lions Club presents its 7th Annual Pumpkin Patch at the… more

City Park Pumpkin…

Oct 5 - 25, 2015
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Collective Media…

Oct 5 - 25, 2015
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Hell Yes Fest

Oct 5 - 11, 2015
HUKA Entertainment and The New Movement are proud to announce the 4th Annual… more

Longue Vue House and…

Oct 5 - 11, 2015
For the 10th Anniversary of the storm, Longue Vue will commemorate the revival… more

New Orleans Swing…

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Preservation Hall…

Oct 5 - 5, 2015
Live New Orleans Jazz Nightly! more

Tai Chi/Chi Kung

Oct 5 - 26, 2015
NOMA, in collaboration with the East Jefferson Wellness Center offers wellness… more

The Foundation…

Oct 5 - 30, 2015
Join us at the Foundation Gallery for  House: Group Exhibition with Andrew… more

The Irish House…

Oct 05, 2015
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The Maison Presents -…

Oct 05, 2015 - Jul 31, 2017
Join us every Monday for a free dinner show featuring Aurora Nealand & The… more

The Photography of…

Oct 05, 2015 - Mar 01, 2016
The Photography of Modernist Cuisine: The Exhibition, a collection of over 50… more

A Conversation with…

Oct 6 - 6, 2015
Join us for a conversation with Lynda Benglis, artist, Katie Pfohl, Curator of… more

A Louisiana Parlor:…

Oct 6 - 11, 2015
This exhibition is in celebration of the acquisition of a superb Rococo Revival… more

Ashe Cultural Arts…

Oct 6 - Nov 12, 2015
The Dinerral Shavers Educational Fund is proud to introduce its newest program,… more

Baby Arts Play! at…

Oct 6 - 6, 2015
Instill a love of art at a young age through a guided, hands-on gallery… more

Clyde & Iggy

Oct 6 - Dec 31, 2015
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Maple Leaf Bar…

Oct 06, 2015 - Sep 27, 2016
Join us for live entertainment featuring the Grammy Award winning ReBirth Brass… more

Newcomb Art Museum of…

Oct 06, 2015 - Jan 03, 2016
Join us for the  Exhibition: "A Shared Space: KAWS, Karl Wirsum,… more

The Historic New…

Oct 06, 2015 - Jan 09, 2016
The Historic New Orleans Collection marks the 10th anniversary of Hurricane… more

7th Annual Pumpkin…

Oct 5 - 31, 2015
The Lutcher/Gramercy Lions Club presents its 7th Annual Pumpkin Patch at the… more

Tonic of Wildness: Photographs by John Bentham


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
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