Jeffrey Lewis will be showing the first 12 images from his year of work on the project: Strong Bodies: Circus Women. These images of circus women show strength, flexibility, and grace with trapeze, lyra, fabric, and juggling. The nudes are meant to illustrate pride and dedication to the ancient, reviving arts of circus, particularly the aerial arts. These 12 images (and one other at Photo Place in Middlebury also for May) are the first public view of the work that has involved 23 circus artists collaborating with the photographer to capture both the stillness and dynamism of the art. The goal has been to show that strength and grace can inhabit the same body along with the will to train extraordinarily hard, and a vast desire to communicate stories and emotions through the skills. Along with the photographs are three selections of words by some of the collaborators giving voice to strong bodies.
While Lewis is best known for his work in economic development he has been photographing performances in circus, dance and jazz for several years. This project builds on his observation of the human body in beautiful motion. While he is completing this project, and working on a parallel one with dancers, he has been photographing the exuberant local drag scene, and developing a project on old hydro power in New Hampshire.
The show opens with Gallery Walk in Brattleboro at 5 p.m. on Friday, May 4. It will remain up for the month at Windham Movement Apparel, 2 Elliot Street.
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