I attended a Lucas Foglia give an artist talk about his work his two main projects from the past ten years. The first project he focused on was a series of photographs called A Natural Order. This series was taken during his five years of visiting a network of remote communities who have decided to abandon urban areas of the U.S. and live off the grid. His photos tell the interesting yet at times contradictory stories of these people’s lives living in lifestyles that attempt to reduce their impact on nature while trying to avoid the dominance of technology in modern culture. Photos of people hunting, picking fruit, swimming nude, and living in shacks wonderfully show the humanity and character of his subjects.
The second series he created and discussed was called Frontcountry. In this series, he explored the contemporary American West and its changing landscape due to mining and other landscape-altering industries. His photos of people riding horses and working on ranches provided a stark contrast with his photos of people driving tractors and working in mines.
I found Lucas Foglia’s talk to be inspiring and very well done. I really enjoyed the way he shared the story behind many of his photos. I thought his photography was very well done. Each photo was excellently composed and exposed perfectly. They all have a sense of depth as well, visually and intellectually. His photos were also good at evoking an emotional response from me when I initially looked at them.
My only two critiques would be that at times some of the photos appear to be orchestrated by him while others appear to be very candid and spontaneous, especially in his A Natural Order series. This back and forth at times was jarring for me. The other would be about his Frontcountry series. I love the narrative of this series but I feel that there are photos in it that don’t seem to fit or further his narrative, photos like Brisco County Jail Cell and Brittany.
Overall I thought Lucas Foglia’s talk was great, I immensely enjoyed it and learned a lot from it. I also appreciated his humble attitude about his work and the way he answered everyone’s questions.