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It has been said that all the world’s a stage, and all of us are just characters playing our parts. If it were up to the USA Network, whose well-known motto is “Characters Welcome”, this would most certainly be true. Though originally referring to the odd characters featured on their shows including Monk and Psych, they’ve expanded their definition to include the rest of us in their new initiative, the Character Project.

 

Character Project is an ongoing artistic initiative committed to celebrating America’s characters- the interesting, dazzling, and distinctive people, from all walks of life, who make this country extraordinary. Inspired by USA Network’s iconic “Characters Welcome” Brand and with the support of the not-for-profit photography organization, Aperture Foundation, USA assembled a team of 11 world-class photographers to capture the character of America. Each artist’s vision was as unique as the people and places they photographed. From Alaska to New York, the subjects they encountered are a stunning example of our country’s diversity. The musicians and the mothers, fishermen and  farmers, athletes and artists, at home, at work, and at play, are a true representation of what it means to live in American today. Reminding us, once again, that we are all characters. And we’re all welcome.

 

The Photographers are Dawoud Bey – Anna Mia Davidson – Jeff Dunas – David Eustace – Joe Fornabaio – Mary Ellen mark – Eric McNatt – Eric Ogden – Sylvia Plachy – Richard Renaldi – Marle Rutheford. Each has a unique style, and vision all their own.

 

Photographer Jeff Dunas described his experience, “No matter where I went or whom I met, I was captivated by the colorful characters and the untethered optimism that only summer can bring.”

 

The Character Project photographs will appear in the book American Character: A Photographic Journey, featuring a foreword by internationally renowned journalist and author Tom Brokaw. It will be published by Chronicle Books and debuts March 2009.

 

The photographs will also be on display in fine art galleries in specific cities throughout the U.S. Be sure to check out the website for dates and times, and more information about the fabulous Character Project!  Go to www.usanetwork.com/characterproject/

www.Dishmag.com / Issue 100 - September 2018
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