April M. Frazier
Courtesy photo
April M. Frazier

VCP displays works by April M. Frazier

BRATTLEBORO — The Vermont Center for Photography (VCP), 10 Green Street, presents a solo exhibition, “Frame of Reference,” by photographer April M. Frazier, which will be on display in VCP's Main Gallery through March and April. An opening reception will be held Friday, March 3, from 5 to 8 p.m., with an Artist Talk on Saturday, March 4, from 6 to 7:30 p.m.

“Frame of Reference” is the pictorial representation of familial influences and experiences that shaped Frazier's life. Using images and genealogical research, it presents an alternate narrative of the African American experience in Texas and beyond. Images of accomplishment, celebration, and love are shown from as early as 1890 to present day, including selected portraits from her family collection.

The collages detail those lives and highlight certain triumphs, including Emanuel Roberts, Frazier's second great-grandfather, and his acquisition of 207 acres of land in Wharton County, Texas, in 1893 and Henry Cox, her third great-grandfather, whose parents married as (1)people freed from slavery in Fayette County in January 1866.

Portraits from “The Missing Chapter: Black Chronicles,” on loan from Autograph ABP, London, are displayed parallel to Frazier's collection of portraits to demonstrate similarities in features, style of dress, and strong presence through time of (2)Afro-Descent people across the globe.

According to VCP, Frazier's exhibit “demonstrates the growth, breadth, and interconnectedness in tradition and experiences over many generations.”

Frazier says in an artist's statement she wants to evoke the experience of viewing pages of a family photo album in a relative's living room. She hopes the viewer will see similarities to their lived experience. The portraits appear in their less-than-pristine condition to serve as tangible evidence that “this was family known and loved then, now, and into the future.”

Frazier is an artist and photographer from Houston, Texas.

She worked in oil and gas for 15 years in various information technology roles before transitioning to photographing professionally in all genres. She specializes in creatively collaborating with minority- and women-owned businesses in her Houston community. Her projects include architectural and documentary images from her travels across Europe, Asia, and the Caribbean.

Her most prized and ongoing work involves research and documentation of her ancestral roots in Texas through the creation of imagery on lands with familial connection from the time of enslavement to present day.

Frazier's art has been exhibited in galleries and museums across Texas, New York, Oregon, and Vermont, including a group exhibition in London. She is also a launch partner for the Getty Images Black History and Culture Collection and uses the robust archive to bring light to the stories of African Americans and others of the Black diaspora.

VCP's gallery is open free of charge to the public from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday.

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