Martine Fougeron, Trades/Oficios/Métiers (2012)

Martine Fougeron presents a selection of photographs called Trades/Oficios/ Métiers in the South Bronx. The project highlights the historic and economic importance of the industries of Hunts Point and Port Morris to the wider New York community, brings closer together the area’s residential and industrial communities, and encourages youth to pursue their own trade in the Bronx and beyond.

Fougeron has photographed these ‘forgotten trades’ and created portraits of the workers, interiors, machines, and products of these diverse industries, from industrial steel production, recycling, and seafood distribution to more artisan trades like baking, printing, and canvas stretching. Fougeron wants to bring art into active relation with diverse spheres of society with the aim of inspiring and realizing responsible social change.

In collaboration with The POINT, Trades/Oficios/Métiers also sparks a new relationship between the area’s residents and the industries that they live among. The photographs will be displayed as large-scale installations on the exterior of the factory buildings, transforming the stark industrial landscape into a celebratory one that lets the public behold the everyday activities taking place in their communities.

Community programs organized with The POINT engaged local residents in the project through factory tours, panel discussions, youth photography, and mural projects. 

Special thanks to the Industries who have opened their doors: Down East SeaFood, Elite Signs, Valencia Bakery, Sims Metal Management, and Midland Steel.

This project was made possible, in part, by the Puffin Foundation and public funds from The Bronx Council on the Arts through the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs Greater New York Arts Development Fund Regrants Program, Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr, and the Bronx Delegation of the City Council.   

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