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The Journey of An-My Lê: From Refugee to Renowned Photographer

An-My Lê is a Vietnamese-American landscape photographer known for her unique focus on liminal spaces that straddle both war and peace. Her journey began when she arrived in the United States as a teenage refugee from Vietnam in 1975. Since then, she has established herself as a prominent figure in the world of photography while maintaining a distinct perspective on the displaced Vietnamese diaspora and their experiences.

Unveiling the Hidden Depths of Military Life

Lê’s work explores much more than your standard portrayals of war; instead, it delves deep into the military experience by capturing its psychological impact and ambiguous nature. One major aspect that sets her apart is her decision to focus on capturing the sense of complexity within these environments rather than the machinery or mythology commonly associated with them. This allows her photographic artistry to truly showcase different degrees of connection between the viewer and the subject matter.

29 Palms: Reflections on War and Its Consequences

One of Lê’s most famous series, “29 Palms,” was shot at a Mojave Desert camp where US Marines were getting trained for deployment to Iraq and Afghanistan. The desolate landscape of this region offers an introspective space perfect for exploring the motivation behind going to war and reflecting on the consequences of engaging in conflict. In her work, there always seems to be a continuous invitation for the viewers to think critically about how they perceive and understand these often-controversial themes.

“Between Two Rivers”: Exploring Global River Delta Connections

In her current exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art, titled “Between Two Rivers,” Lê takes on a more global perspective. She investigates the interconnectivity of river delta regions worldwide, with a focus on rivers like the Mekong and the Mississippi, highlighting the continuous flow of human history. The concept of contrasting similarities found across different delta landscapes offers viewers an exciting opportunity to appreciate An-My Lê’s unique vision.

Navigating Life Aboard Maritime Vessels in “Events Ashore”

In her series “Events Ashore,” Lê explores the everyday life aboard maritime vessels that span seven continents. This collection includes close-up portraits of non-military personnel, as well ***!


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