I’ve been commissioned by the Museum of Wisconsin Art to create new work in Wisconsin Dells, a longtime popular tourist town in the state. Now known primarily as a destination for families seeking waterparks, the natural beauty of the landscape was the initial draw for tourists. The photographer H.H. Bennett’s stereoscopes, which he started shooting in 1868, were distributed widely, drawing visitors to the region from the Midwest and East Coast. In 1875, Bennett opened a daylight studio, which still exists today as part of a museum dedicated to his life and work.
I’ve been granted access to work in Bennett’s original studio, creating portraits of tourists, local residents and members of the large international workforce that populate the area in the summer on J-1 visas.
The exhibition, which will include newly commissioned work by Mark Brautigam and Tom Jones, as well as historic work by Bennett, will be on view in June 2019, with a related book published by the University of Wisconsin Press.