Scene 1 Fri, Apr 1, 2016 3:00 PM
Series Info
Series:Special Event
Film Info
Director:Danny Wilcox Frazier
Production Country:USA


Documentary photographer Danny Wilcox Frazier shares work from Bury Me Not on the Lone Prairie along with live music from Iowa-born musicians The Pines. Free and open to the public.


Bury Me Not On The Lone Prairie: A decade of photography from the Midwest and Great Plains

Since 2003, documentary photographer Danny Wilcox Frazier has photographed the impact of depopulation on rural communities across the Midwest and Great Plains, including in his home state of Iowa. Frazier has documented the slow decay that has turned many small towns into rural ghettos. Nationally, rural communities have lost more than 12 million people since 2000.  The most recent census puts its share of the nation’s population at just 16 percent – the lowest in recorded history and down from 72 percent a century ago. Frazier’s photographs do not shy away from the economic struggles many people face in rural communities due to out-migration. More importantly though, his photographs recognize and celebrate those individuals working to maintain their culture and identity in small towns and rural outposts throughout the Midwest and Great Plains.

The men and women of these regions are, and always have been, self-sufficient to their core.  However, over the years, much of the population has fled to big cities or the East and West Coasts in search of jobs and greater opportunity.  Those left behind have become increasingly isolated.  The lone prairie is at once a place of pain and vanished prosperity, yet also rich with tradition and soul.  Frazier’s work is not a record of the physical landscape of the Great Plains, but rather a testimony of the emotional landscape that remains.  His photographs bridge these emotions of loss and pride, striking an unsettling union between the two.


Documentary photographer and filmmaker, Danny Wilcox Frazier, focuses his work on marginalized communities both in and outside of the United States. Frazier has photographed people struggling to survive the economic shift that has devastated rural communities throughout America, including in his home state of Iowa. His work acknowledges isolation and neglect while also celebrating perseverance and strength. Frazier is a member of VII Photo.

With his photographs from Iowa, Frazier documented those individuals continuing to live traditional lives in rural communities across the state, people challenged economically but often unwavering in their conviction to stay. The project was awarded the Center for Documentary Studies/Honickman First Book Prize and was published by CDS and Duke University Press in November of 2007. Renowned photographer Robert Frank selected Frazier’s work for the prize. After completing the book (Driftless: Photographs from Iowa), Frazier directed and coproduced with MediaStorm a documentary that confronts issues highlighted by his photographs. The film has received national recognition including an Emmy nomination in New Approaches to News and Documentary Programming.

Frazier’s assignment work includes: National Geographic, Harper’s, The New Yorker, The Atlantic, TIME, GEO (Germany), GQ (UK), Mother Jones, LIFE, The Sunday Times Magazine (London), Newsweek, Fortune, BusinessWeek, and Der Spiegel. In print features on his photographs and films include: Hungry Eye Magazine (UK), The New York Times (USA), photo-eye (USA), Photo Raw (Finland), LFI (Germany), RearViewMirror Magazine (Italy), Photo District News (USA), B&W Magazine (UK), TAKE photography magazine (Australia), Duke magazine (USA), the trip (Italy), and Virginia Quarterly Review (USA).

Since completing his graduate studies at the University of Iowa in 2004, Frazier has continued to teach workshops as well as university classes on occasions. Education and the advancement of visual storytelling have always been prominent in his work mission.

Frazier’s photographs have been included in numerous books including: Detroit: An American Autopsy by Charlie LeDuff with the essay, Evidence Detroit, by Danny Wilcox Frazier, The Penguin Press, February 2013, War Is Only Half The Story, Vol. IV, The Aftermath Project, January 2012, burn.02, burn inc, September 2011, and Land – Country Life in the Urban Age (catalogue), Noorderlicht, October 2010.    

Frazier is the recipient of numerous grants and fellowships for foreign and domestic projects including: Emerging Photographer Fund finalist (2012), Dorothea Lange–Paul Taylor Prize finalist, Center for Documentary Studies (2010), The Aftermath Project (2009), Humanities Iowa, an affiliate of the NEH (2009), W. Eugene Smith Grant finalist (2007 and 2008), and the Stanley Fellowship for Graduate Research Abroad (2003). His photographs are in public and private collections, including: The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Philadelphia Museum of Art, George Eastman House International Museum of Photography and Film, Duke University’s special collections library, Honickman Foundation, and Smithsonian, National Museum of American History.


The collaboration between transcendental folk band The Pines and acclaimed Iowa photographer & filmmaker Danny Wilcox Frazier begins with the cover for The Pines new EP, "Pasture: Folk Songs." "Pasture" explores the concepts of past & future through a Midwestern lens, with folk songs old and new and Frazier's compelling photography creating a seamless thread in music and image. Danny Wilcox Frazier's work focuses on marginalized communities across America, including his native Midwest & Iowa, home to The Pines as well.  The intersection of The Pines vivid soundscapes and Frazier's portrayal of small-town life is the intersection of the Midwest itself, caught between a fading past and an uncertain future. Negative space, intimacy with tradition & heritage in a changing world, and the preservation of human spirit are strong themes mingled on the plains and the prairie.  -Red House Records