Alex Soth is an American photographer and filmmake. The theme of his most recent exhibition “Broken Manual” is hermits, mentioned previously in this blog. Soth is currently exhibiting at New York City’s Sean Kelly Gallery. Soth was interviewed by the Blouin ArtInfo website. The article is titled: “How to Run Away: Alec Soth on What He Learned From His New Series of Hermit Portraits,” printed Feb. 17, 2012. Additionally, the mainstream Huffington Post also features Soth in an article titled “Alec Soth’s Photographs Capture Males Outside Of Society” (because the hermits Soth photographed are all men).
Here is an excerpt from the interview, followed by a quoate from the Huffington Post article.
ARTINFO: Hermits aren’t exactly easy to pin down. How did you actually find your subjects?
SOTH: In many cases, I found people on the Internet, which always seems like a contradiction. The whole thing about this project is that it’s a contradiction. One of the resource materials that I looked at a bit… there’s this blog that I read on hermitry. And I just think that’s really funny. All these people reading this blog–
ARTINFO: A blog on hermitry seems like the ultimate irony.
SOTH: Yeah, exactly. …
What is the inner life of a hermit like, you ask? There is something unsettling about the men in Soth’s images; they quietly address the interior struggle between savagery and civilization, between masculinity and sensitivity. It is clear that the men place great trust in Soth; the natural urges for both bold masculinity and sensitivity lurk in the shadows of their honest faces. Their haunted, faraway expressions create equally haunting imagery, the wilds of the woods mirroring the recesses of the mind.