After completing the shooting of "Sleeping by the Mississippi" in 2002, Alec Soth traveled to Bogota, Colombia to adopt a baby girl. While the courts processed paperwork, he and his wife spent two months in the capital city waiting to take their new baby home. The baby's birth mother gave the new parents a book filled with letters, pictures and poems. I hope that the hardness of the world will not hurt your sensitivity, she wrote, When I think about you, I hope that your life is full of beautiful things. With these words as a mission statement, Soth began making his own book for his daughter. Soth writes, In photographing the city of her birth, I hope I've described some of the beauty in this hard place.Beauty makes itself known through ramshackle architecture, the companionship of animals, and the perseverance of the human spirit. Yet, in "Dog Days, Bogota", Soths photographs transcend the simple description of beauty and poetically roam through a cast of strays, tough souls, and hints of hope. Alec Soth, born in 1969, is a photographer born and based in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
He is the recipient of several major fellowships from the McKnight and Jerome Foundations and was awarded the 2003 Santa Fe Prize for Photography. His work is represented in major public and private collections, including the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Museum of Fine Arts Houston and the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis. Soths photographs have been featured in numerous solo and group exhibitions, including the 2004 Whitney and Sao Paulo Biennials. His monographs "Sleeping by the Mississippi" and "Niagara" were published by Steidl. Soth is an associate photographer with Magnum Photos.