But Still, It Turns: Recent Photography from the World at International Center of Photography (ICP), February 4 – August 15, 2021

 “The International Center of Photography (ICP) presents its winter/spring 2021 exhibition: But Still, It Turns: Recent Photography from the World, guest curated by photographer Paul Graham. The exhibition comes on the heels of ICP’s reopening of its galleries on October 1 following a six-month closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic and arrives just as ICP celebrates its first anniversary at its new home on Manhattan’s Lower East Side. 

In But Still, It Turns, nine contemporary photographers present images made in the 21st-century United States that reflect a movement towards a lyrical documentary practice. Extending the tradition of Robert Frank, Walker Evans, Gordon Parks, and Diane Arbus, this work fits a notion of ‘photography from the world’—photography that resists both narrative arcs and the drama of photojournalism or staged photography, grappling instead with the world as it is, in all its ambiguity and wonder.” — ICP

Curran Hatleberg’s gatherings of humankind in Lost Coast’s intimate portraits and episodic narratives that reconstruct a sense of place and community through a shifting cast of characters and scenery. 

Curran Hatleberg, Lost Coast (24), 2014. © Curran Hatleberg
Curran Hatleberg, Lost Coast (8), 2014. © Curran Hatleberg
Curran Hatleberg, Lost Coast (26), 2014. © Curran Hatleberg

Piergiorgio Casotti and Emanuele Brutti’s collaborative Index G examines the city of Saint Louis through its streets, homes, and people, demonstrating how inequality is revealed through profound differences in local businesses or living conditions, as well as seemingly arbitrary details within urban surroundings. 

Piergiorgio Casotti and Emanuele Brutti, STL PEOPLE no. 1, 2017. © Piergiorgio Casotti and Emanuele Brutti
Piergiorgio Casotti and Emanuele Brutti, STL STREET no. 13, 2017. © Piergiorgio Casotti andEmanuele Brutti
Piergiorgio Casotti and Emanuele Brutti, STL PEOPLE no. 17, 2017. © Piergiorgio Casotti and Emanuele Brutti

Kristine Potter’s Manifest, which combines the genres of landscape and portrait photography to re-examine the canon of traditional western landscape photography, and in so doing uncovers a world far more formidable and disorienting than previously detailed. 

Kristine Potter, Dean, 2014. © Kristine Potter
Kristine Potter, Spring Landscape (Crawling Paths), 2015. © Kristine Potter
Kristine Potter, Drying Out, 2015. © Kristine Potter

RaMell Ross’s South County, AL (a Hale County), which presents images that center on the rhythms and flow of Black lives, embracing quiet spaces and quotidian moments where people are pictured away from the burden of representation, granting them dignity of selfhood. The exhibition also includes screenings of his Academy Award–nominated documentary Hale County This Morning, This Evening (2018). 

RaMell Ross, Boys, 2014. © RaMell Ross
RaMell Ross, Landscape, 2012. © RaMell Ross
RaMell Ross, Here, 2013. © RaMell Ross

Richard Choi’s What Remains, which pairs video and still photographs to offer a meditation on the stream of life and its expression as a single image, between film and photography, between life and our memory of it. 

Richard Choi, Untitled (Recorder), 2011. © Richard Choi
Richard Choi, Untitled (Clock Winding), 2019. © Richard Choi
Richard Choi, Untitled (Baseball Glove), 2012. © Richard Choi

Stanley Wolukau-Wanambwa’s All My Gone Life, which braids contemporary images made by the artist across the United States with archival negatives; together they ask how the image, and the imagination, might play into the elaboration of a future in which vision and delusion so frequently overlap. 

Stanley Wolukau-Wanambwa, Monteiro Street, 2014. © Stanley Wolukau-Wanambwa
Stanley Wolukau-Wanambwa, Fleet Street, 2015. © Stanley Wolukau-Wanambwa
Stanley Wolukau-Wanambwa, Maury Street, 2014. © Stanley Wolukau-Wanambwa 

Vanessa Winship’s peripatetic vision in she dances on Jackson, which presents a conversation between landscape and portrait, exploring the vastness of the United States and the inextricable link between a territory and its inhabitants. 

Vanessa Winship, Untitled (Swing on Tree), Franklin, Louisiana, February 2012. © Vanessa Winship
Vanessa Winship, Untitled (Bridge on Canal Street), Chicago, Illinois, November 23, 2012. © Vanessa Winship
Vanessa Winship, Untitled (Ray Nixon Road, Abandoned Car, Twisted Tree), Denver, Colorado, November 2011. © Vanessa Winship

Gregory Halpern takes viewers on an enigmatic journey westward, across the desert and through the city of Los Angeles, ending at the Pacific Ocean in ZZYZX, where everything unfolds into a kind of rapture—simultaneously psychedelic, self-destructive, and sublime. 

Gregory Halpern, Untitled, 2016. © Gregory Halpern
Gregory Halpern, Untitled, 2016. © Gregory Halpern
Gregory Halpern, Untitled, 2016. © Gregory Halpern

“We opened our new space at Essex Crossing six weeks before the pandemic shut us down,” said Mark Lubell, ICP Executive Director. “It’s been a tumultuous time for us all, but the work in this show aims to offer space for visitors to reflect on the components that make up our individual experiences and the empathy to be found for others. I hope it is a breath of relief and contemplation for our visitors.” 

Images courtesy International Center of Photography.