The fertile soils of the Connecticut landscape has sustained generations of farmers who toil from dawn to dusk to work the land and grow the food to feed a hungry state. It also has inspired award-winning photographer Jack McConnell to document the hardscrabble life of farmers. The CT Farm Project is a new exhibit that celebrates the faces and places of farming in Nutmeg State.
Images from the CT Farm Project capture the rugged look, heartwarming feel and timeless character of life on the farm. Captivating B&W portraits of men and women, young and old, are studies in contrast. The deeply personal and moving images are offset in the exhibit with dramatic photographs of familiar farm machinery, animals and implements.
The CT Farm Project documents and celebrates the enormous efforts of present day farmers who care for their animals, maintain equipment, plant fields, harvest crops and market their products to the public. People who are passionate about farming and local food will fall in love with photographs of the CT Farm Project.
“This is an exciting time for farming, especially with the new interest in eating local and the national concerns about climate change that may jeopardize farming in the American heartland and breadbasket,” said McConnell. “More than anything, this project is about people. The farm is their medium. Farmers love the land and they love what they do.”
Photographs from CT Farm Project will be displayed at galleries and public spaces throughout the state with the purpose to support working farmers and raise awareness of the need to protect Connecticut farmland. Working closely with organizations including the Department of Agriculture, Connecticut Farmland Trust and Northeast Organic Farming Association, the CT Farm Project will travel to venues including the Farmland Preservation Celebration, which will take place this Saturday, Sept. 20th. Two public exhibits are currently on display through Sept. 30th – a large collection of 57 photographs can be viewed at the Good News Café & Gallery in Woodbury, and 20 photographs decorate the walls of Firebox Restaurant Gallery in Hartford.
McConnell has visited more than 50 farms throughout Connecticut to date for the CT Farm Project including dairy and cattle farms, orchards and vineyards, produce growers and chicken farms. A video of images from the collection is set to music with an original song titled, “This Life Calls to Me,” which was written and performed by local musician Jack Collins from Chaplin.