A native of Michigan, LaCourt moved to Red Hook, Brooklyn more than a decade ago. What he found there was an urban village defined by its spirit and resilience. Once one of the busiest ports in the world, Red Hook fell on hard times as the changing shipping industry, the construction of the BQE, and the crack epidemic each took their toll. The neighborhood was left physically isolated, largely depopulated, and lacking in most basic services.
Yet there were those who chose to call Red Hook home when living just about anywhere else in New York City would have been easier—be they the descendants of the original dock workers, the residents of one of the city’s largest housing projects, or the artists who began flocking there in the seventies in search of light and peace and space to create. They all share a spirit of independence and defiance and, perhaps most importantly, a profound sense of community unique amid the frequently anonymous hustle of New York.
But today Red Hook is a neighborhood very much at a crossroads, teetering between the urban decay of decades past and the coming wave of gentrification that has already swept through so much of Brooklyn.
It’s this ephemeral moment between two worlds—and the people who have intentionally made their home in the breach—that LaCourt has been working to capture.
This Town is a both a selection of some of his most compelling Red Hook portraits to date and the seed that will allow his work to continue. All donations and monies raised during the exhibit will go toward replacing the photography equipment stolen from LaCourt over the holidays and allow him to continue his ambitious chronicle.