New exhibit sheds light on homelessness

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Courtesy of Jon Linton

Jon Linton, a book publisher, photographed the lives of Tucson’s homeless for his exhibit that is set to open this weekend. The exhibit is made in collaboration with the Carlos G. Figueroa Foundation.

The mission statement of the Carlos G. Figueroa Foundation states that all people are guaranteed a quality of life that does not depreciate their existence. A new photo exhibit is working to appreciate the existence of a forgotten minority of people.

Opening on Saturday, the Carlos G. Figueroa Foundation will be in full support of the “I Have a Name Project” exhibit, which will be presented at the historic Hotel Congress. The exhibition will showcase work by Jon Linton, photographer and founder of the I Have A Name Project, which attempts to bring a greater sympathetic understanding of homelessness around the U.S.

Linton’s artwork is composed of formidable images of those part of the homeless community around Arizona and their current living conditions. Many of the photographs are portraits, giving a face to those that are normally unacknowledged and unrecognized.

Inspired by a friend who became homeless, Linton used his personal time and money to begin using photography to document the homeless, and turned his skill into a powerful art. Along with multiple exhibitions, Linton also authored a book titled “I Have a Name,” which chronicles this campaign that began in 2007. Lipton is also in the progress of writing another book titled “Street Diaries.” Through sales of book, prints and donations, the I Have a Name Project hopes to help those without a home.
“My full time job is what nourishes my life,” Lipton said, “but the project is what nourishes my soul.”

The exhibition is in honor of the memory of Carlos G. Figueroa, a local homeless man who was murdered and robbed in 2003. Ron Austin and Diana Figueroa, who is the daughter of Carlos G. Figueroa, are the founders of the Carlos G. Figueroa foundation.

“We hope the exhibit opens people’s eyes and promotes awareness,” Austin said. “No one knows the grim condition the homeless are living in.”

The foundation is a team of volunteer photographers and videographers, along with other individuals who are advocates for the homeless and impoverished communities in Tucson. Their mission is to show homelessness as it really is, and replace stereotypical images of the homeless with honest depictions.

—Follow Joseph Ambre @DailyWildcat


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