After graduation, after a divorce, after an election
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For the last eight years, Michael Dvorak has photographed people in his home state of Minnesota. Taken at county fairs, parades, and on the streets in and around Minneapolis, the images are part of a series he calls “Close to Home.”
“It is only at the first encounter that a face makes its full impression on us.”
— Arthur Schopenhauer
This is a setting where visitors let go of their inhibitions, where performers and exhibitionists have thronged for more than a century. The beach and boardwalk are an impromptu stage for all sorts of daring and joyful endeavors.
In 2006 my husband, photojournalist Peter Menzel, and I produced a book detailing the food that thirty families in twenty-four different countries consumed in one week’s time. . . . We traveled the world again, this time photographing scores of different people from disparate backgrounds, each with one typical day’s worth of food. The result is What I Eat: Around the World in 80 Diets.
Born in Germany in 1921, Clemens Kalischer arrived in the United States at the age of twenty-one, a Jewish immigrant who’d narrowly survived the Holocaust. He had no money and spoke no English. One of his few possessions was a book of photographs by Hungarian Jewish photographer André Kertész. Titled Paris Vu Par, it was filled with iconic images of the city.
“When people see these photographs, I hope they see life before death,” Angelo says. “I hope they see love before loss.”
When I met Randy Livingston in 2000, I was making the long drive from California back to my home state of Minnesota and had stopped in the mountains of Utah to go for a run. On a quiet gravel road three miles from the highway, I found myself face to face with a cowboy on a horse and a couple of dogs trailing behind. He invited me back to his small camper trailer for a cup of coffee.
And sometimes it’s the very otherness of a stranger, someone who doesn’t belong to our ethnic or ideological or religious group, . . . that can repel us initially, but which can jerk us out of our habitual selfishness, . . . and give us intonations of that sacred otherness, which is God.
Four months into their seven-month tour, the mostly nineteen- and twenty-year-old marines at Patrol Base Fires in Sangin, Afghanistan, had seen enough violence to permanently line their boyish faces. Two of their platoon’s men had been killed by improvised explosive devices [IEDs], one of them blown literally in two.
From 1992 to 2007 Martín Weber photographed hundreds of Latin Americans, each holding a chalkboard on which he had asked them to “write down a wish or a dream you have.” His goal, he says, was to give his subjects added dimension by allowing the viewer a glimpse of their personal stories. In their brief messages we see evidence of economic and political struggles, of human failings and aspirations, of broken hearts and enduring love.