Anastasia Photo is proud to present American photographer Matt Black’s first solo exhibition in New York City. His twin documentary projects The Kingdom of Dust and The People of Clouds explore the changing human relationship to food, farming and the environment. In 1995, Black returned to his native region, California’s Central Valley, to embark on The Kingdom of Dust, a multi-year chronicle exploring the underside of contemporary rural life in the shadow of some of America's richest farms. While working on this project, Black noticed a shift in the population of migrants coming to work the fields, and in 2000 began The People of Clouds, an extended photographic inquiry into the collapse of indigenous farming communities in the Mixteca region of southern Mexico. Through Black’s masterful eye and intimate relationship with his subjects, his photographs reveal the poetry of everyday moments as he chronicles communities in flux responding to broader global forces.
A native of rural California, Black grew up in a small town in the Central Valley, a vast agricultural area in the heart of the state. He began taking photographs at a young age and worked as a newspaper photographer while in his teens. The recipient of many honors, Black’s work has received grants and awards from the Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Foundation, the California Arts Council, Pictures of the Year International, the California Council for the Humanities, the Alexia Foundation for World Peace, the Sunday Magazine Editors Association, and others. His work has also been named a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and has received a Golden Eye award from the World Press Photo Foundation.
Anastasia Photo specializes in documentary photography and photojournalism. The gallery space also serves as a center for discussion and portfolio review. In an attempt to further connect these photographic images and the events they depict, Anastasia Photo endows each exhibition with a related philanthropic organization. For this exhibition, we have chosen to support the Center on Race, Poverty & the Environment, a California-based environmental justice organization that uses collective action and the law to support communities of color that bear the brunt of environmental hazards.