Photographer and filmmaker Danny Wilcox Frazier focuses his work on marginalized communities both in and outside of the United States.
Frazier has photographed people struggling to survive the economic shift that has devastated rural communities throughout America, including in his home state of Iowa. His work acknowledges isolation and neglect while also celebrating perseverance and strength.
With his photographs from Iowa, Frazier documented those individuals continuing to live traditional lives in rural communities across the state, people challenged economically but often unwavering in their conviction to stay. The project was awarded the Center for Documentary Studies/Honickman First Book Prize and was published by CDS and Duke University Press in November of 2007. Renowned photographer Robert Frank selected Frazier’s work for the prize. After completing the book (Driftless: Photographs from Iowa), Frazier directed and coproduced with MediaStorm a documentary that confronts issues highlighted by his photographs. The film has received national recognition including an Emmy nomination in New Approaches to News and Documentary Programming. Frazier’s assignment work includes: National Geographic, Harper’s, The New Yorker, The Atlantic, TIME, GEO (Germany), GQ (UK), Mother Jones, LIFE, The Sunday Times Magazine (London), Newsweek, Fortune, BusinessWeek, and Der Spiegel. In print features on his photographs and films include: Hungry Eye Magazine (UK), The New York Times (USA), photo-eye (USA), Photo Raw (Finland), LFI (Germany), RearViewMirror Magazine (Italy), Photo District News (USA), B&W Magazine (UK), TAKE photography magazine (Australia), Duke magazine (USA), the trip (Italy), and Virginia Quarterly Review (USA). Since completing his graduate studies at the University of Iowa in 2004, Frazier has continued to teach workshops as well as university classes on occasions. Education and the advancement of visual storytelling have always been prominent in his work mission. Frazier is the recipient of numerous grants and fellowships for foreign and domestic projects including: Emerging Photographer Fund finalist (2012), Dorothea Lange–Paul Taylor Prize finalist, Center for Documentary Studies (2010), The Aftermath Project (2009), Humanities Iowa, an affiliate of the NEH (2009), W. Eugene Smith Grant finalist (2007 and 2008), and the Stanley Fellowship for Graduate Research Abroad (2003). His photographs are in public and private collections, including: The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Philadelphia Museum of Art, George Eastman House International Museum of Photography and Film, Duke University’s special collections library, Honickman Foundation, and Smithsonian, National Museum of American History.