Tom Lindfors

Star Prairie, WI 54026-5301

Å powerful portrait is a collaborative endeavor between the photographer, his subject, and the viewer. I began photographing Native American dancers at powwows more than twenty years ago. What began as a mission to master black and white photography evolved into a life-long education in an ancient peoples struggle to be recognized as sovereign nations founded in a culture that respects the environment and treats all life as sacred. My early black and white portraits were exposed and processed in the field using a 4x5 view camera and Polaroid film emulating the work of historic photographers like Edward Curtis and De Lancey Gill. In recent years I've begun working collaboratively with native artists to create contemporary portraits often incorporating multiple images to create layers of context to convey a particular's individual's story. I want people to realize this is a living, flourishing culture not one preserved in textbooks on the verge of extinction.

My architectural work is born out of the spirit of the Industrial Revolution, the birth of man's confidence and the beginning of his belief that he could do anything. I try to communicate that invention is in our blood as genetically undeniable as our need for food, shelter and love. The scale of that invention can be as grand as a skyscraper or as diminutive as the workings inside a pocket watch. The photograph may be abstract or specific. Our machines testify to the imposition of our will over time and space employing structure, mechanics, and most importantly, imagination.  
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