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JACKIE NICKERSON  /  FARM  /  April 21, 2005 – May 21, 2005  /

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Installation View, 2005


April 21 – May 21, 2005
Opening Reception: Thursday, April 21, 2005
The Jack Shainman Gallery is proud to present Farm the first U.S. solo exhibition of the photographs of Jackie Nickerson. The exhibition will include photographs from Nickerson’s series Farm, which were published as a book by Jonathan Cape in 2002 and Nickerson’s most recent work, portraits of clergy taken over the past several years.
Jackie Nickerson who has lived for many years in New York and currently lives and works in Ireland, took the photographs in Farm during three years she spent traveling in South Africa, Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Malawi. Highlighting moments of individual identity in the lives of migrant and plantation workers throughout Southern Africa, Farm presents images of workers’ hands, clothing as well as portraits of both men and women.
The photographs in Farm began in the summer of 1997 during a visit by Nickerson to Zimbabwe where she was first captivated by both the culture and lives of plantation workers and the intense light of the mid-day sun they toiled in.   She continued her travels through war ravaged Mozambique, the political upheaval of Zimbabwe’s farms and the displaced workers of South African townships.
In 1998, Nickerson bought a flatbed truck to continue her travels through Zimbabwe, which allowed her access to remote farms and an opportunity to provide transport for many traveling workers, learning of their lives, families, tribes and hardships. In Malawi, Nickerson visited internationally owned tea and coffee plantations, one with a population of over 50,000 people. On the tea plantations, she photographed the toll of the harsh and sharp tea plants on the workers hand and the unique adaptations they made in clothing to work in the fields.
With a stillness and sharp focus, Nickerson’s images fill the frame. “Justin August” is a portrait of a young man layered in hats and clothing, a serious look hiding what appears to be a smile ready to rise to the surface. “Grandmother,” pictures a woman in a green sweater and headscarf, dust covering her face that looks with great nobility directly into the camera. Jackie Nickerson says “The inspiration for the book came directly from the people I photographed. I was impressed with their work ethic and their positive attitude and pride. This naturally followed on in every aspect of their life including how they dressed. They made a huge effort to add creativity and elegance to their appearance. Their approach to dressing was unlike any I had encountered before and was hugely refreshing. 
They are completely free in their approach to mixing patterns, textures and style without reference to the media. They adapted their outfits to suit the job they had to do that day so there was a close connection between the practical and the aesthetic. Added to this was some tribal influence and tradition. I am very grateful for the good natured way in which I was invited into their lives.”
In 2002 Nickerson started her series on the clergy in Ireland. Since the 1980’s, the Catholic Church in Ireland has been going through some extreme changes and challenges. Nickerson’s images offer a new and honest look at the most intimate and far reaching aspects of the Catholic Church, and present a modern and unseen insight into the world of the Church today.
Jackie Nickerson first came to prominence as a fashion photographer in the 1990s, working in Milan, Paris and New York where her work was featured in Elle, Marie Claire, Wallpaper, German Vogue, Arena, and other publications. Since 1997 she has been traveling and working on personal projects which currently include photography in Ireland and Spain.
Gallery hours are Tuesday – Saturday from 10 am to 6 pm.  For additional information and photographic material please contact the gallery at
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