An interview with Joseph Rodriguez as part of the Visual Citizenship Conference at NYU’s Institute for Public Knowledge. For more details, please visit: nyu.edu/ipk/conferences/visual-citizenship-conference/
Internationally recognized documentary photographer Joseph Rodriguez was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. Joseph’s work has appeared in such publications as American Photo, Black&White, ESPN, The New York Times Magazine, National Geographic, Jane, Cosmopolitan, GQ, Los Angeles Magazine, Mother Jones, Newsweek, Esquire, Stern and Der Spiegel.
He has received awards and grants from the USC Annenberg Institute for Justice and Journalism, the Open Society Institute, Justice Media Fellowship, Katrina Media Fellowship, National Endowment for the Arts, the Rockefeller Foundation, Mother Jones International Fund for Documentary Photography, Alicia Patterson Fellowship, Fund for Investigative Journalism, Konstnarsnamden Stipendium Swedish Arts Council and New York State Foundation for the Arts. He has been awarded Pictures of the Year by the National Press Photographers Association and the University of Missouri, in 1990, 1992, 1996 and 2002.
His latest book “Still Here: Stories After Katrina,” (powerHouse Books 2008) documents the ongoing expressions of hope, perseverance, and suffering in the still-devastated communities of New Orleans and Texas. “Flesh Life Sex in Mexico City” encounters a re-sexualized and re-spiritualized country in flux, published by PowerHouse Books (2006). “Juvenile,” focusing on youthful offenders in Silicon Valley was published by PowerHouse Books (2004). “The New Americans” recounts the dramatic journeys of seven new immigrant families, published by New Press, New York (2004). “East Side Stories: Gang Life in East L.A.,” published by PowerHouse Books (1998) was reprinted in 2000 and 2004, and received widespread critical acclaim. “Spanish Harlem”, a series of penetrating and intimate photographs of “El Barrio,” was published by the National Museum of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC (1995). “Respekt: Gangs and their World in Los Angeles” was published by DN Bokforlaget, Sweden (1997).
Recent exhibitions of his work have appeared at The Selby Gallery, Sarasota, Florida; NYU Gulf & Western Gallery, Galleri Kontrast, Stockholm, Sweden; The African American Museum, Philadelphia, PA; The Fototeca, Havana, Cuba; Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, Birmingham, Alabama, Open Society Institute’s Moving Walls, New York; Frieda and Roy Furman Gallery at the Walter Reade Theater; Lincoln Center; International Center of Photography, New York; and the Kari Kenneti Gallery Helsinki, Finland. In 2001 his website “Juvenile Justice” appeared in cooperation with Human Rights Watch and Pixelpress.org, exploring the lives of five adolescents and their struggle with the California criminal justice system.pixelpress.org/juvenilejustice. In 2006 his new documentary project about Katrina evacuees living in Texas and New Orleans being supported by a Soros Katrina Media Fellowship was published onlinepixelpress.org/wheredowe/.
In 2008, Joseph’s work from post hurricane Katrina is launched soros.org/resources/multimedia/katrina. Joseph photographed the Levi’s worldwide ad campaign “Originals Never Fit,” found at eu.levi.com/onf/.
Joseph teaches at New York University, the International Center of Photography, New York and has also taught at universities in Scandinavia, Europe and Mexico. He is currently represented by Bill Charles Inc in New York.