Utah photographer Mark Hedengren re-shot a LIFE magazine photo essay from 1954. See the project at www.themormonsthebook.com and the article and YouTube interview in the Salt Lake Tribune (July 24, 2009.)
Three Mormon Towns was an absolute joy to work on. After spending five years photographing Mormons all over the world as part of my The Mormons project, it was a breath of fresh air to come back to Utah, to come back to my home state and photograph in Gunlock, Toquerville, and St. George. I don’t think I could have photographed Three Mormon Towns before completing The Mormons. Going to graduate school in Europe and spending five years traveling in Asia, Africa, Central and South America allowed me to see Utah as if it were a foreign country. A family with a mother and a father with more than two children are as exotic as a Buddhist monk in many ways. My time abroad let me see that uniqueness in Utah culture. Following in Adams’ and Lange’s footsteps was a dream come true. I admire their work deeply and to photograph a subject that we all shared is the closest I’ll get to meeting them.