This project documented the work of farmer Kris Gupton at his 5-acre hemp farm outside Boone, N.C. Gupton, an Army Veteran, began growing hemp in 2018 following the passage of that year's Farm Bill, which legalized the cultivation of cannabis plants for the production of hemp-derived products such as textiles, building materials and CBD products. For Gupton and countless other farmers in Appalachia, the legislation instantly created an economic lifeline as tobacco and other traditional cash crops were no longer profitable.
While the industry remains nascent relative to other commodities, the increasing popularity of hemp products points to the continued expansion of hemp cultivation. Many hurdles remain small-share farmers like Gupton as inconsistencies in laws and regulations make future planning and business decisions difficult to execute. However, given the need for new economic opportunities for communities in the region, as well as hemp’s potential as a low-carbon textile and building material makes the continued growth of hemp production critical in the years ahead.
Selects from an ongoing portrait series featuring artists from Philadelphia's Mexican community. Cesar Viveros and Jose Lemus are among an underrepresented group of artists in Philadelphia’s Mexican community. Both are leading a citywide art project, Proyecto Grandote, which brings Mexican-American artists together to create collaborative public art intended to draw attention to the immense talent this community possesses.