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An Ethnocentric Tour by Wing Young Huie
“Looking for Asian America shows real people engaged in the full range of human activity. This is no small accomplishment for the photographer or his subjects. For Asian Americans it is extraordinary to be merely ordinary. To others, even if not to themselves, Asian Americans appear to be contradictions of identity—a Chinese-Yankee is a knockoff.” —Frank H. Wu, from the Foreword
In search of contemporary Asian America, celebrated photographer Wing Young Huie—the only member of his family not born in China—traveled with his wife Tara through nearly forty states to explore and document the funny, touching, and sometimes strange intersection of Asian American and American cultures. Looking for Asian America illustrates their rich and surprising journey across the United States.
Through Huie’s eyes, keenly aware of his own Midwestern roots and perspective, we witness such images as a Vietnamese Elvis, Miss Congeniality on her cell phone in San Francisco’s Chinatown, a Hmong street sign in rural North Carolina, a meditating Falun Gong protestor in Washington, D.C., a bubble tea Valley Girl, and a Chinese theme park in Orlando. Huie’s camera captures ABCs (American-born Chinese), FOAs (Fresh Off the Airplane), and a self-described “redneck” Chinese restaurant owner near the Okefenokee Swamp. Taken together the photographs reveal a complex portrait of the U.S. cultural landscape, and their dignified elegance invites a closer, deeper look.
Accompanied by the personal reflections of both Wing and Tara Huie, the nearly one hundred spectacular photos tell a story that both mirrors and contradicts stereotypes of Asian Americans, ultimately questioning what it means to be ethnic and American in the twenty-first century.
Wing Young Huie has received widespread acclaim for his works, including Lake Street USA, documenting the cultural landscape of his native Minnesota. He is a recipient of a Bush Artist Fellowship and two-time recipient of the McKnight Photography Fellowship. He lives in Minneapolis.
Frank H. Wu is dean of Wayne State University Law School and the author of Yellow: Race in America Beyond Black and White.
Anita Gonzalez teaches in the Master of Liberal Studies Program at the University of Minnesota.
Aerial Views of Big Bend Country
Take an unforgettable sky excursion over Big Bend with photographer Paul Chaplo as he captures the shapes, textures, and colors of the craggy, weathered landforms people usually see only from the ground—and some places no photographer has gone before. Flying from Marfa, and hanging precariously from the open door of an aircraft, Chaplo shares a hawk's eye view of a fiercely beautiful region, revealing the stark and magnificent landscapes carved by the force of eons of wind and water on the arid, mountainous country along the Rio Grande.
An Outer View of the Inner World
Mathematicians is a remarkable collection of ninety-two photographic portraits, featuring some of the most amazing mathematicians of our time. Acclaimed photographer Mariana Cook captures the exuberant and colorful personalities of these brilliant thinkers and the superb images are accompanied by brief autobiographical texts written by each mathematician. Together, the photographs and words illuminate a diverse group of men and women dedicated to the absorbing pursuit of mathematics.
The compelling black-and-white portraits introduce readers to mathematicians who are young and old, fathers and daughters, and husbands and wives. They include Fields Medal winners, those at the beginning of major careers, and those who are long-established celebrities in the discipline. Their candid personal essays reveal unique and wide-ranging thoughts, opinions, and humor, as the mathematicians discuss how they became interested in mathematics, why they love the subject, how they remain motivated in the face of mathematical challenges, and how their greatest contributions have paved new directions for future generations. Mathematicians in the book include David Blackwell, Henri Cartan, John Conway, Pierre Deligne, Timothy Gowers, Frances Kirwan, Peter Lax, William Massey, John Milnor, Cathleen Morawetz, John Nash, Karen Uhlenbeck, and many others.
Conveying the beauty and joy of mathematics to those both within and outside the field, this photographic collection is an inspirational tribute to mathematicians everywhere.
An Artist's Journey
Phillip Hofstetter first visited Yucatán in 1987 and was entranced, as much by the sheer physical beauty of the region as by the enduring character of the Maya people still inhabiting the region. For more than twenty years he has been documenting his travels in Yucatán and his professional collaboration with archaeological excavation projects there. His reflections on the Maya culture emphasize survival and adaptation, while images of ancient sites, the churches of the Franciscan mission period, and the ruined haciendas of the henequen period serve as physical reminders of the enduring ways in which the Maya have shaped the landscape of Yucatán over millennia.
Landscape Photographers in the Nineteenth-Century American West
The early history of photography in America coincided with the Euro-American settlement of the West. This thoughtful book argues that the rich history of western photography cannot be understood by focusing solely on the handful of well-known photographers whose work has come to define the era. Art historian Rachel Sailor points out that most photographers in the West were engaged in producing images for their local communities. These pictures didn’t just entertain the settlers but gave them a way to understand their new home. Photographs could help the settlers adjust to their new circumstances by recording the development of a place—revealing domestication, alteration, and improvement.
The book explores the cultural complexity of regional landscape photography, western places, and local sociopolitical concerns. Photographic imagery, like western paintings from the same era, enabled Euro-Americans to see the new landscape through their own cultural lenses, shaping the idea of the frontier for the people who lived there.
The Quiet in the Land
With their distinctive head coverings, plain dress, and quiet, unassuming demeanor, the Mennonites are a distinctive presence within the often flamboyant and proud people of Texas. If you have seen them at a gas station, in a grocery store, or even at the Dallas–Fort Worth airport, you have probably taken note and wondered how they came to be there. In this photographic tour of two Texas Mennonite communities, separated by almost 450 miles, Laura L. Camden and Susan Gaetz Duarte introduce you to the Beachy Amish Mennonites of Lott, a small community of approximately 160 people in Central Texas, and the very different Mennonites of Seminole, a West Texas farming community of more than five thousand residents and five separate congregations, several of which still speak the Mennonite Low German. Spending more than a year getting to know the families, participating in day-to-day activities, and photographing the unique culture of the communities, Camden and Gaetz Duarte developed deep insight into not just the religious beliefs but the family relationships, role expectations, and daily routines of these people. Through their camera lenses, they offer others a touchingly intimate view of a unique lifestyle seldom experienced by outsiders. In a foreword, former governor Ann Richards identifies the book as part of both the long photographic tradition in Texas and the tradition of cultural and religious diversity in the state. Mark L. Louden’s introduction provides the historical backgrounds of Mennonites in Europe, their core beliefs, and their development into branches in North America. Dennis Carlyle Darling offers insightful comments on the photography that allows an intimate, respectful view of the people, their lifestyle, and their culture.
Photography and Mexico’s Image Environment
A prominent figure in the Twin Cities art scene, Chris Faust marks the essence of the changing Midwestern landscape by documenting common scenes in an uncommon way. Known for his spectacular panoramic work, Faust is also increasingly admired for his unique night photographs, where he quietly unveils a world we never noticed was there and when the darkest hours evoke a mood of mystery and surrealism. The palette of light and shadow heightens our senses by revealing the stillness and ambiguities of the landscape.
Nocturnes, a beautiful collection of more than seventy tritone photographs, is a visual record of our world as few ever see it: during the nighttime hours. Emphasizing the passage of time as well as the necessity for change, the images reflect our disappearing rural terrain, abandoned urban streets, and aging industrial spaces, recalling aspects of our culture that are quickly fading into the past.
With an affinity for certain old-world practices and tools, Faust works just with ambient light and uses no digital or electronic technology—only classic darkroom processing—allowing all the subtle textures and tones to emerge in his work. Faust’s photographs of the Midwest are shot in a panoramic format with wide, detailed images—spectacular in both their artistry and documentary impact.
Chris Faust, a resident of St. Paul, is one of Minnesota’s finest photographers. His award-winning images are widely collected and exhibited throughout the region and the country.
Joan Rothfuss is a writer and art historian who was curator of the Walker Art Center for more than seventeen years. She was coeditor of the Walker collection catalogue Bits & Pieces Put Together to Present a Semblance of a Whole.