Zeitgeist: Eric Hart Jr

Now 21, Hart is currently at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts and so far the experience has gone beyond what he could’ve imagined. “Going into my freshman year, I have to admit, I was intimidated. I suffered from imposter syndrome for the longest time, just because this isn’t the norm for people who come from where I come from, but honestly I think I’ve conquered that,” Hart reflects. “Tisch really has pushed me not only academically and artistically, but also as a person. I am much more in touch with myself, as well as my goals and beliefs, simply from being in this environment.”
Growing up in Macon, Georgia, photographer Eric Hart Jr’s earliest images were taken in his grandmother’s front garden. “I was surrounded by a lot of nature, so I initially started photographing trees, landscapes and dirt roads,” Hart remembers. He was in middle school at the time, and after setting up Instagram and Tumblr accounts he soon started saving images and portraits he felt he could recreate.
Hart’s work right now typically takes the form of stylised portraiture, with a heavy focus on the nature of what it means to be Black in America. “It’s work that applauds the beauty and power of those who at times have been left in the shadows,” he explains. “From an aesthetic perspective, I am big on lighting. I want the shots to be sharp in quality and textures. I also love confidence in a frame. I love capturing models who exude a pride in their identity.”
We recommend activating Javascript in your browser.
Each year, as part of the Photography Annual, Creative Review’s editorial team selects five photographers that have made an impact over the past 12 months as our Zeitgeist winners

Top: Untitled, featuring Patrick Yeboah, personal work, 2021; When I Think About Power, personal work, 2021. All images: © Eric Hart Jr

Posted by Contributor