Oct 29, 2007


the new Daylight Magazine is featuring a podcast by my childhood neighbor, Danny Frazier. as the winner of the Duke Book Prize his images are gaining exposure everywhere i look it seems.

his photos of Iowa are profoundly touching. i feel a bit of a disconnect between his words and the images at times, but my appreciation for the work is limitless. his words make me almost ashamed of fleeing Iowa.

when i first moved to Colorado, and later Alaska, new people i met all responded to my home town the same way. when asked where I came from they responded in a sort of congratulatory manner. as if to say, i had met success in moving out of Iowa. those who know me know that i'm a fervent defender of the midwest. i'm so pleased to see such good work coming out of Iowa. it will always be home. i hope to be fortunate enough to create a body of work there one day. Danny has certainly set a standard.

photos © Danny Wilcox Frazier

you can preorder Driftless at photo-eye.


Pod said...

cheers for alerting us to these mr huff!!
hope all is well with you and yours!

Matt Niebuhr said...

Hi Ben,

Thanks for posting this. I think you've mentioned your Iowa connection before, so too for me, a northwest Iowa farm boy.

Anyway, I watched the podcast, and it is interesting to see the images - it's challenging for me to see images of Iowa that portray a compelling sense of loss, while also personally feeling homesick (been in Oregon only since March). It's a dangerous combination for sure of potential nostalgia - overcoming the abilty to see the pictures. I have my own strong and cherished memories of family farm life that only now am I begining to feel full force.

I enjoy visting your blog. Congrats on your recent Grant in support of your work... I look forward to seeing what you come up with. I've never been to Alaska, but maybe sometime. I recall a distant relative of mine (maybe a family myth - not sure) that actually moved to Alaska back in the goldrush days. I've always wondered about that story.

It's interesting how one considers a connection to place. Even harder to find that "truth" to your sense of place as a "visitor". I wonder how long it takes to shift from being a vistor to calling it home. I'd imagine your challenges ahead will be tough but well worth the effort in the long run.

Best of luck and happy accidents to you.

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