People Issue from Chicago Reader

Chicago Reader Interview by Aimee Levitt and Danielle A. Scruggs
Photos by Danielle A. Scruggs

Latoya Ruby Frazier at SAIC. Photo credit: Danielle A. Scruggs

“In form, Frazier’s black-and-white photographs echo the work of 1930s social documentarians. But, she says, “I’m not a social documentarian, I’m an artist speaking through photographs.” Unlike those older photographers, she belongs to the world she’s documenting: the body of work that generated her 2014 book The Notion of Family and won her a MacArthur “genius” grant in 2015 is an intensely personal look at how the departure of the steel industry decimated her hometown of Braddock, Pennsylvania. Frazier, 34, came to Chicago to take a teaching job at the School of the Art Institute, but the prospect of greater racial segregation and economic inequality under a Trump administration makes her want to stay: “I understand why I’m here now.”

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Courtesy of: Chicago Reader’s People Issue