New York Times Opinion” A Photographer’s American Road Trip An-My Lê October 27, 2020
Reprinted from The New York Times:
Photographs and Text by An-My Lê
These past four years, I’ve been on a photographic road trip of the United States. It often seems that there are two Americas, left and right, looking at the same place from radically different and irreconcilable perspectives.
This week I found myself on the grounds of the White House. It was a drizzly, dreary morning. Dug up sections of the lawn adjacent to a lineup of broadcast tents appeared like graves. A theater of the real. I photographed Senator Dick Durbin of Illinois, who is all about work, in his Capitol office. On his coffee table lay a biography of the “Silent General,” Ulysses S. Grant.
Ms. Lê was a 2012 MacArthur fellow, and a survey of her work is at the Carnegie Museum of Art, in Pittsburgh, through January. She teaches photography at Bard College.
There are many types of power and means of taking measure of the powerful. Many of my photographs are made out of a profound sense of powerlessness but also out of a desire to locate power and authority in unexpected places: in the natural world, in a solitary border patrol officer or in the intimacy and strength of a family under a bridge that connects the United States to Mexico. These images are reminders to me that our American landscape and the communities within it transcend this cultural and political moment.
An-My Lê: New York Times, October 27, 2020 L: St. John’s Church, Lafayette Square, Washington D.C., 2020 R: Oval Office Set, ‘Saturday Night Live,’ NBC Studios, New York, N.Y., 2018
An-My Lê: New York Times, October 27, 2020L: Sugar Cane Field, November 5, Houma, Louisiana, 2016 R: Cars along the Rio Grande, U.S.-Mexico border, Ojinaga, Mexico, 2019
An-My Lê: New York Times, October 27, 2020 L: U.S. Customs and Border Protection Officer, Presidio-Ojinaga International Bridge, Presidio, Texas, 2019 R: Mexico Customs and Border Protection Officer, Presidio-Ojinaga International Bridge, Ojinaga, Mexico, 2019
LTI-Lightside has been working with An My Lê since 2016. You can see more of her work bu clicking here.