Call for Entries - AAP Magazine #8 / Street

Ben Huff: Atomic Island, Adak

Ben Huff: Atomic Island, Adak
Ben Huff: Atomic Island, Adak
I first met Ben Huff in 2011 in China of all places. There was an international photography festival there, through the lush valleys and surreal mountains on a 13-hour train ride (I'll mention briefly that I was standing for this entire ride) straight west from Shanghai, in the small city (3 million people) of Lishui. This place was picturesque and humid and a mix of ancient and brand new (they were still building the hotel we were staying in). The festival unfortunately no longer exists, but I remember walking into the "American Pavilion" (for lack of a better description for the amazing abandoned factory building that housed our photography) and seeing Ben's photographs from his documentary project, "The Last Road North." It was as if I was transported straight out of steamy China to the desolate Dalton Highway and a barren stretch of tundra in Alaska. I spent a lot of my time in that corner of the exhibition hall in Lishui, thinking about distances traveled and about how Ben photographed the land and the people.

This might be the time to mention that my upstate New York family had always been obsessed with Alaska, to the extent that throughout middle school and high school in the 1980s, my brother had his own subscription to the Anchorage Times. A daily subscription. I myself just consumed any books I could get my hands on, my favorite still being "Coming into the Country" by John McPhee (really a must read, even if you're not an Alaska-phile).
Anyway, all this leads me to the magical moment, somewhere in the middle of the alphabet when wading through the 780 portfolios submitted to Aint-Bad Magazine's Issue 12 competition, when I saw Ben Huff's work again. This time, a different project: Atomic Island, Adak. I grew up near an air force base too and I've noted how a lot has changed since it closed. Nothing like the shift in Adak though.

Here is what Ben had to say about this ongoing series:

"The island of Adak, Alaska is situated half way out the Aleutian Chain. Bering Sea to the North and Pacific Ocean to the South. Closer to mainland Russia than to Anchorage.

"My interest in Adak began several years ago after reading the account of the bombing of Dutch Harbor during WW2, and learning more about the Japanese occupation of Attu, the furthest west island in Alaska. I was stunned to find an island out the chain that was once home to nearly ten thousand army personal, and later the air force, and finally the navy during the Cold War as a nuclear submarine surveillance outpost.

"I was born, in the Midwest, during the height of the Cold War. I'm a product of duck and cover drills, Red Dawn, War Games and the perpetual fear of the USSR. The island is a sort of time for me - at once menacing and strangely comforting. But, always a symbol of our waste and a relic of deteriorated power.

"In 1997, the army left the island. In the span of two weeks, nearly 6,000 people left the landscape. Now, 78 people live among the detritus of our military ambition.

"Atomic Island, Adak is an ongoing project. My next trip to the island was over the week of the 4th of July, where I made pictures of the red white and blue, fireworks, and celebration of independence against the backdrop of an abandoned military outpost in the Westernmost city in America."


Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Biography

Ben Huff (b.1973) was born in LeClaire Iowa, migrated to Colorado in his 20's and moved to Fairbanks, Alaska in 2005. He currently lives with his wife in Juneau.

His first monograph, "The Last Road North," was published by Kehrer Verlag in 2014. He's had solo exhibitions at the Pratt Museum, Alaska State Museum, Museum of the North and Newspace in Portland, Oregon. He was an artist-in-residence at Lightwork, in Syracuse, New York, in 2014, awarded a Rasmuson Fellowship in 2016, and received Alaska Humanities Forum grants in 2015 and 2016, most recently for his ongoing work on the post-cold war military outpost on the Aleutian Island of Adak.

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff

Ben Huff


  Ben Huff
Stunning Photo Websites on SmugMug
Sponsored Link
 

More Photography News

News
Back to Rome of 1969, John R. Pepper
Back to Rome of 1969, John R. Pepper
After recent exhibitions featuring emerging photographers, RAW Streetphoto Gallery is opening its new season on September 13th with a solo exhibition...
  Read More
News
Shane Balkowitsch makes portraits of Swedish environmental activist and 2019 Nobel Peace Prize nominee Greta Thunberg
Shane Balkowitsch makes portraits of Swedish environmental activist and 2019 Nobel Peace Prize nominee Greta Thunberg
On Tuesday, October 8, North Dakotan wet plate collodion artist Shane Balkowitsch had the chance to make several portraits of Swedish environmental...
  Read More
News
Getty Museum Acquires Photographs by Laura Aguilar
Getty Museum Acquires Photographs by Laura Aguilar
The Los Angeles photographer Laura Aguilar, who died last year at the age of 59, created work that explored her own identity, challenged traditional...
  Read More
News
Book: Once Upon a Time in Shanghai by Mark Parascandola
Book: Once Upon a Time in Shanghai by Mark Parascandola
Mark Parascandola, a documentary fine-art photographer based in Washington, D.C., is interested in how photography and the movies shape our...
  Read More
News
Documentary Photography Reconsidered: History, Theory, Practice by Michelle Bogre
Documentary Photography Reconsidered: History, Theory, Practice by Michelle Bogre
Documentary photography is undergoing an unprecedented transformation as it adapts to the impact of digital technology, social media and new means of...
  Read More
News
Book: Flight of Spirit, The Photographs of Anne Noggle
Book: Flight of Spirit, The Photographs of Anne Noggle
In the history of photography, Anne Noggle (1922-2005) stands alone among the great American photographers for her powerful, wry portraits and...
  Read More
News
Results of
Results of 'The Poetry of Shadows' curated by Sandrine Hermand-Grisel
Being asked to jury "The Poetry of Shadows" was a difficult but fascinating experience. Thank you for allowing me to discover so many incredible...
  Read More
News
Joe Vitone: Family Records
Joe Vitone: Family Records
Do not miss the beautiful exhibition "Joe Vitone: Family Records" at the Akron Art Museum until October 27, 2019. Family Records is an ongoing series...
  Read More
News
26th Bayeux Calvados-Normandy award for war correspondents
26th Bayeux Calvados-Normandy award for war correspondents
From 7 to 13 October Bayeux will be hosting the 26th Bayeux Calvados-Normandy award for war correspondents. The town, the Department of Calvados, the...
  Read More
News
Book: MASK by Chris Rainier
Book: MASK by Chris Rainier
Ever since the dawn of human civilization, mankind has been in search of the sacred and a profound connection to the spiritual world. For countless...
  Read More
Photographers
Award Winning UK Photographer Jack Latham documents Iceland
Award Winning UK Photographer Jack Latham documents Iceland's most controversial unsolved double murder
British photographer Jack Latham and his Sugar Paper Theories photography project documents one of the most controversial murder cases in Iceland's...
  Read More
Events
Marking Time Exhibition celebrates the Bay Area Photographers Collective
Marking Time Exhibition celebrates the Bay Area Photographers Collective's 20th Anniversary at Harvey Milk Photo Center Gallery
The Bay Area Photographers Collective (BAPC), a nonprofit organization dedicated to peer learning and a diversity of photographic styles, will present...
  Read More
Stunning Photo Websites on SmugMug
Sponsored Link
Join our newsletter
Be up-to-date with call for entries, deadlines and other news about exhibitions, galleries, publications, & special events
 
AAP Magazine#8 Street Photography Contest
 
Discover the 7th Issue of AAP Magazine
All About Photo Magazine showcases the winners of AAP Magazine Competitions
 
 
 
David Bailey: SUMO
Sponsored Link
 
TAKES U TO THE NEXT LEVEL
 
Since 2005, your guide through contemporary art from a French perspective to let you make exciting choices