LaToya Ruby Frazier receives New Museum Next Gen Award

2016 NEXTGEN dinner honoring LaToya Ruby FrazierOn the “A” w/Souleo: Presidential Election Looms over New Museum Next Generation Dinner
by Peter “Souleo” Wright

There couldn’t be a more opportune time for the New Museum to honor photographer, LaToya Ruby Frazier than near the end of a tumultuous presidential election season. This past Friday in New York, Frazier was honored at the annual Next Gen dinner for her social and environmental justice driven work that explores political topics such as global warming, health care, and economic inequities.

Massimiliano Gioni, artistic director at the New Museum shared that Frazier’s work takes on added weight as voters head to the polls. “LaToya’s work forces institutions and people to be aware of their position and their responsibilities and consequences,” he said. “Sadly it’s very inspiring work during time of [the] election. It shouldn’t be but it is a reminder of what’s at stake.”

No matter which candidate wins the presidency, Frazier will continue exploring disadvantaged communities. Her next series, set to debut in a solo show in February 2017 at MAC’s in Belgium, investigates coal mining villages in the area. Again, it’s particularly timely as presidential candidate, Donald Trump has reportedly stated he would “save” the coal industry.

“You have Trump and [Mike] Pence running on a message that the U.S. has a war on coal. What I’m doing in this new series is interviewing and making collaborative photographs with people who are former coal miners from Belgium,” she said. “My work has taken on a cross-cultural conversation with coal juxtaposed to the 12 years I documented about what it means to be poor in a post-Reagan era in Braddock, Pennsylvania.” Frazier explained.

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Courtesy of: The Huffington Post