Noted Photographer Hunter Barnes Sets His Sights On Opa-locka

OLCDC welcomes the talented photographer for artist-in-residence program

Sep 12, 2013, 09:15 ET from Opa-locka Community Development Corporation

OPA-LOCKA, Fla., Sept. 12, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The Opa-locka Community Development Corporation (OLCDC), as part of its revitalization of the city of Opa-locka, has invited New York-based documentary photographer Hunter Barnes to visit Opa-locka and capture the lives of the residents with his acclaimed black and white portraits.  Barnes will immerse himself in Opa-locka, explore the community's inner circles, and interact with the citizens and youth while living in one of the OLCDC's residences in Magnolia North (formerly known as the "Triangle") for two weeks from September 15 – 30, 2013.

"Opa-locka is one-of–a-kind.  I have never seen anything designed that way." said Barnes. "I was immediately impressed by the architecture in the city and throughout you can really feel an overwhelming sense of community."

For the past 13 years, Barnes has amassed hundreds of images illuminating some of the most obscured cultures in the world that are typically concealed or that the public would ordinarily not have access to.  Some of his work features life in a lowrider car club, a Native American reservation, and in a war-torn village in Sri Lanka.  His work can be found on display at Milk Gallery in New York City.

"I like to take on projects that speak to me and show the people I am working with in the right light. I thought this Opa-locka project would be good for everyone, especially the residents. Plus, I like doing something that bridges the gap between the community and the art world," said Barnes.

Barnes' Opa-locka endeavor is made possible by the Surdna Foundation's "Thriving Cultures" grant to support the OLCDC's arts-based revitalization activities that engage the community. By collaborating with artists like Barnes, the OLCDC hopes to attract more renowned artists from around the world, as well as local creatives, to stimulate outside interest in the city and empower residents through the arts. 

His work will be showcased in a public exhibition in Opa-locka with the guidance of the highly sought-after South African curator Claire Breukel:

  • November 15, 2013 – Preview exhibition for guests of OLCDC's Art of Transformation annual fundraiser
  • Fall 2014 – Final show during Opa-locka's first multi-disciplinary arts event (exhibition/festival)

"We're going to celebrate the lives of the residents through Hunter's lens," said Willie Logan, Ph.D., President & CEO, OLCDC. "We hope the stories he captures will shed light on the community's heart and soul."

Barnes shoots traditional black and white photographs using triX 400 film. His cameras are vintage ranging from a Nikon FM2, Mamiya C220, to a Pentax 6x7. With a background in photo chemistry, Barnes is able to develop his images in a way that best illustrates the original story behind each image.  He processes his film in a lab in New York and does his own printing at his studio in Oregon, a technique not commonly used by modern photographers.

SOURCE Opa-locka Community Development Corporation