Featuring: Richard Misrach
Presented byFor Freedoms
Romans 13:10—originally featured in Las Cruces, New Mexico—is taken from Richard Misrach’s series Border Cantos. Border Cantos presents a unique collaboration between photographer Misrach and composer Guillermo Galindo.
Misrach has been photographing the two-thousand-mile border between the U.S. and Mexico since 2004, with increased focus starting in 2009—resulting in a distinct melding of the artist as documentarian and interpreter. The latest installation in Misrach’s ongoing Desert Cantos series, this project includes eight suites of photographs—some made with a large-format camera, and others that have been captured with an iPhone.
Misrach and Galindo have worked together to create pieces that both report on, and transform the artifacts of migration: water bottles, clothing, backpacks, Border Patrol drag tires, spent shotgun shells, ladders, and sections of the Border Wall itself–which Galindo then fashions into instruments, to be performed as unique sound-generating devices; video clips of those performances can be seen on this site. He also imagines graphic musical scores, many of which use Misrach’s photographs as points of departure.
Richard Misrach was born in 1949, in Los Angeles. He has spent four decades photographing the American landscape, paying special attention to the desert Southwest, Louisiana, and Hawaii. His photographs are held in the collections of most major institutions, including the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
He has had solo exhibitions at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., the Art Institute of Chicago, The Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, and the Musée d’Art Moderne, Paris. The awards he has received include four National Endowment for the Arts Fellowships, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and the Kulturpreis der Deutsche Gesellschaft für Photografie (German Society for Photography) for Lifetime Achievement in Photography.
Misrach’s work is the subject of over twenty monographs including Bravo 20: The Bombing of the American West, Crimes and Splendors: The Desert Cantos of Richard Misrach, On the Beach, Destroy this Memory, Petrochemical America, The Mysterious Opacity of Other Beings, and Border Cantos.
The museum exhibit, Border Cantos, a collaboration between Misrach and the composer Guillermo Galindo, was recently exhibited at the San Jose Museum of Art in California, the Amon Carter Museum of American Art in Fort Worth, Texas, the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas, and Pace Galleries in New York City.
His current series, The Writing on the Wall, explores politically-charged graffiti left on abandoned buildings in the desert Southwest.
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Founded in 2016 by artists Hank Willis Thomas and Eric Gottesman, For Freedoms is a platform for creative civic engagement, discourse, and direct action. Inspired by American artist Norman Rockwell’s paintings of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms (1941)—freedom of speech, freedom of worship, freedom from want, and freedom from fear—For Freedoms’ exhibitions, installations, and public programs use art to deepen public discussions on civic issues and core values, and to advocate for equality, dialogue, and civic participation.
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