"Shipyard Workers of Hampton Roads" opens at Chrysler Museum next week

13News Now Mike Gooding has the story

NORFOLK, Va. (WVEC) -- In some way, they are the faces of Hampton Roads; the shipyard workers who keep our local economy humming, and, the Navy fleet floating.

And now, the public will get its chance to see them up close.

"Glen McClure: The Shipyard Workers of Hampton Roads" opens next week at the Chrysler Museum of Art.

It's a project that has actually been underway for three years. And for the artist/photographer, McClure, it's been a true labor of love. Since 2014, he visited ten area shipyards, snapping 9,000 pictures along the way.

Of those, he made 400 prints, and 21 of them are about to go on display at the Chrysler.

"it's very important there's an audience," he said. "That's sort of why artists do what they do. Like, I consider myself a visual reporter. I see things, I kind of report on in my way which is direct, honest portrait work. You want it to end up on the wall so the public will come."

PHOTOS: "Shipyard Workers of Hampton Roads" opening at Chrysler Museum

And what the public will see is the very face of what it means to be from and of this proud and patriotic part of the country.

"I hope they'll spend the time to actually look at the prints, look at them very closely, see the detail, see the grit and the grime, and texture, and hopefully, the dignity I try to show when I'm photographing these people," he said. "That's what I'm all about. I'm about the people."

McClure's work will be on display at the Chrysler from May 19 through July 23.

Additionally, McClure's work will  be also presented at Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center (June 2-August 6); Peninsula Fine Art Center (June 3-June 25), and Charles H. Taylor Arts Center in Hampton (June 24-August 13).

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