Coinciding with May 2019, the European Month of Photography, Mudam Luxembourg – Musée d’Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean presents a monographic exhibition for one of the most important photographers of her generation, LaToya Ruby Frazier (*1982). Since the early 2000s this American artist has developed a documentary practice that is both personal and engaged with the social, political, and economic realities of the United States.
Frazier's photographic series The Notion of Family, was developed between 2001 and 2014 around three generations of women – her grandmother, mother and herself – witnessing the decline of her hometown of Braddock, the former steel capital of the suburbs of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, that would subsequently become a ghost town. Based on personal experience, the series makes visible a collective history that is universal in its scope. Frazier has said: "Braddock is everywhere".
For her exhibition at Mudam, Frazier presents The Notion of Family with two more recent bodies of work that continue her focus on the working classes and the interaction between personal life and sociopolitical issues. On the Making of Steel Genesis: Sandra Gould Ford (2017) is the outcome of a close collaboration with Sandra Gould Ford, a photographer and writer who was employed in the steel industry of Pittsburgh and who documented life in factories that were closing down. The second series, Et des terrils un arbre s’élèvera (2016-2017), is the result of an ambitious project near Mons, in Borinage Belgium, created in collaboration with former miners and their families.
LaToya Ruby Frazier was born in 1982 in Braddock, Pennsylvania, USA. Her works have been the subject of solo exhibitions at the MAC's in Mons (2017), CAPC in Bordeaux (2016), Carré d'art in Nîmes (2015), Brooklyn Museum in New York and the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston (2013). She has participated in international biennials, such as the 56th Venice Biennale (2015), the 8th Busan Biennale (2014) and the 76th Whitney Biennial (2012). Frazier was awarded the Gordon Parks Foundation Award in 2016 and the MacArthur Fellowship in 2015 as well as, the Infinity Award by the International Center of Photography of New York for her book The Notion of Family (Aperture, 2014).