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Meet our Photoville 2022 Artists

The Alice Austen House partnership with The Photoville Festival returns with online community storytelling events and photo exhibitions in public spaces throughout New York City.

Photoville Logo including the word "photoville" and the graphic of a shipping container

The Photoville Festival provides an accessible venue for photographers and audiences from every walk of life to engage with each other, and experience thought-provoking photography from across the globe — with free access for all! For the first time in 10 years, the Photoville Festival will be celebrating visual storytelling in the summer.

 

This year the Alice Austen House will present six exhibitions showcasing Staten Island photographers, curated by Victoria Munro:

What's It Like

Jahtiek Long

Born and bred on Staten Island, Jahtiek Long is an interdisciplinary artist, emerging curator, photographer, musician, and community organizer. Recently, his work has been predominantly photography-focused and centered around subverting the traditional narrative of Staten Island. The island at times faces a stigma — and a picture is worth a thousand words. With that in mind, Long hopes to provide a shift in the representation of the borough and the people who call it home. Long’s work has been featured by PBS, NY1, the Staten Island Advance, and Inked Magazine.

Over the last few years, I’ve made it a priority to capture the beauty, charm, and story of a city — parts of which can be overlooked. Staten Island itself can be seen through a polarizing lens, by both Staten Islanders themselves and the rest of New York City. This body of work aims to provide another perspective, one with a more nuanced approach — showcasing the places and experiences that may at times be overlooked, but deserving of representation and the opportunity to be a part of the narrative of Staten Island, New York.

David Lê

Maiden Name

David Lê (b. 1985) was born on Staten Island, on Swan Street — where he shot the images that are displayed in this exhibition. He is an alumnus of P.S. 16 and I.S. 61. His photography practice began in earnest when he spent a year cataloging modernist architecture in Hanoi, Vietnam as a Fulbright Scholar in 2008. He went on to study the intersection of public religion and memorialization during his doctoral studies at Brown University. In 2019, he co-founded Maiden Name, a concept store operating at the intersection of art, design, and fashion based in New York City. The work presented here is from the Maiden Name Spring-Summer 2022 lookbook. Lê resides in New York City.

These images are from the Maiden Name Spring-Summer 2022 lookbook. The idea for this shoot was to collage glossy fashion imagery into the urban fabric of Staten Island. This is a New York brand, and we wanted to show a side of New York that’s rarely if ever seen.

Front Porch Project

Christine Kenworthy

Christine Kenworthy is a professional photographer based in Staten Island, New York. She believes the most important thing in life is the relationships you have with the people you love. Her photography represents families across Staten Island.

During the beginning of the pandemic, a photography project across the country was born called the Front Porch Project. In early April 2020, I launched my own Front Porch Project in Staten Island. In exchange for photographing families in front of their home from 8 feet away, I collected a donation to help those on the front lines. Each participating family received five edited digital images and donated at least $20. We were able to feed emergency room staff at both island hospitals, contributed to purchasing hospital supplies, and donated to Maker Space to help fund the making of face shields.

Etiolai

Samual Partal

Samuel Partal makes photographs of the post-natural landscape. He lives and works in Staten Island, New York.

“I view my practice as operating within a tradition of landscape photography — making photographs in the bits of wildness that bleed through the margins of the built environment — spaces in varying degrees of preservation and abandonment, ruin and remediation. I am interested in encountering the many transfigurations of the natural at play, in the uncanny landscapes of the anthropocene, or current geological age. In the studio, I set my film negatives on mounts and paint them with solutions of earth’s metals and mineral salts, sometimes letting them steep in the brine for days or weeks. These materials were central to the earliest photographic processes. They are also substances entangled in the diverse metabolisms of soil and sea, as well as agriculture and heavy industry. The commingling of these chemistries, the accretions and erosions that form their own miniature landscapes on and under the surface of the image, speak to the material and ecological history of photographs, and of the worlds they inhabit.” – Partal, 2022

Thomas Giarraffa

Dynamic Relationships

Thomas Giarraffa tells stories with his photography, creating surreal environments to comment on his past and the world he inhabits.

“My work is focused on isolation and how that affects a being — both the good and the bad. Mental, physical, and emotional abuse are elements within many people’s lives that we don’t seem to talk about enough. Even when the people behind such pain come from a good place, or hold good intentions, it can still result in pain nonetheless.” – Giarraffa, 2022

Island Lens

Lauren Fread, Mai’yah Kau, Elvia Gezlev, Jessica L. Gianna, John Kilcullen, Laura Pannone, Len Rachlin, Gillian Ricci

This group exhibition provides a snapshot of the diverse photographic practices on Staten Island. Ranging from photographic Instagram feeds to traditional B&W photography.

Location

The Staten Island Photoville sites are located on the South Beach boardwalk and the Alice Austen Park. More information and exact locations will be provided closer to the date.

North Shore by Gareth Smit
02

from North Shore by Gareth Smit (2019 exhibitor)

irma bohorquez-geisler
02

from Migrant Stories by Irma Bohorquez-Geisler (2021 exhibitor) 

Gale Wisdom
02

Nature of Light by Gale Wisdom (2021 Exhibitor)

Photoville Festival 2022 kicks off with an Opening Day Community Celebration in glorious Brooklyn Bridge Park on Saturday June 4, 2022 and will feature public art exhibitions in all 5 boroughs for the month of June, in collaboration with local cultural institutions and NYC Parks. Photoville will once again host artist-led walking tours, workshops, and opportunities for educators and students to connect with the Festival’s featured visual storytellers.

Learn more about Photoville 2022 here.

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Paul Mpagi Sepuya

CURRENT Exhibition

The Alice Austen House presents the work of Paul Mpagi Sepuya in our Summer 2022 exhibition.

144 Powers

Paul Mpagi Sepuya

Above:  “Study for friendship, D.C.S and F.C. (2106),” 2015, 34 x 48 inches

“The subjects appearing in my work are a cast of friends and intimates, muses, lovers, mentors, and peers. I am inspired to work with these “shared subjects,” as I call these friends, for their mobility and visibility at the particularly charged intersection of creative, social, and sexual in the queer community. I am keyed into the recognition that happens weeks after a turn in the darkroom – like the photographer’s dark room, the queer dark room allows for the memory of a kind of vision you can’t explain to one who hasn’t entered. The relationships that exist across subjects and myself serves as the basis for the organization and editing of my work…” 

– Paul Mpagi Sepuya, 2017


Paul Mpagi Sepuya (b. 1982, San Bernardino, CA) is a Los Angeles-based artist working in photography, and Associate Professor in Media Arts at the University of California San Diego. 

His work is in the collections of the Baltimore Museum of Art, the Getty and Guggenheim Museums, the Hammer Museum, LACMA, MoCA Los Angeles, MoMA, SFMoMA, the Studio Museum in Harlem, and the Whitney Museum, among others. His work has been covered in the New Yorker, the New York Times, Art in America, The Nation, and The Guardian, and was featured on the cover of ARTFORUM’s March 2019 issue.

Recent museum exhibitions include those at the Barbican Centre, LACMA, the Guggenheim Museum, the Getty Museum, and a project for the 2019 Whitney Biennial. A survey of work from 2006-2018 was presented at CAM St. Louis and Blaffer Art Museum, accompanied by a monograph published by CAM St. Louis and Aperture Foundation. 

Most recently, Paul was an artist-in-residency at the Anderson Ranch Arts Center, and was featured in the PHOTO 2022 International Festival of Photography in Melbourne and a group exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington D.C. A solo exhibition at Bortolami in New York is open through late June.



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Pug Day- Postponed

Due to the threat of inclement weather, 

Pug Day will be rescheduled. Please visit this site for updates. 

This fun event pays homage to Alice Austen’s pug, Punch, and is in partnership with the
Pug Dog Club of Greater New York. 

Come and enjoy the beautiful Alice Austen Park with your furry friends. 

There will be plenty of pugs…and their enthusiastic owners stage a pug costume contest! 

Everyone is invited to bring along their favorite pug pals to run around
the grounds and enjoy the day.

 

 

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Photoville 2022 Submissions are now open!

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Unremarkable Handiwork: Translations and Collections

During 2021 and early 2022 Michelle Grabner collaborated with the Alice Austen House to create a new series of paintings and photographs inspired by the home, studio and collections of trailblazing photographer Alice Austen. Drawing on her own studio-focused practice and Austen’s photographic documentation of her home’s interior decoration and fabric collections, Grabner’s work re-examines fabric patterns and materiality in doily making, expanding on repetitive design and layering. 

 

Unremarkable Handiwork: Translations and Collections

ALL WORKS BY

Michelle Grabner

TOUR ONLINE

During 2021 and early 2022 Michelle Grabner collaborated with the Alice Austen House to create a new series of paintings and photographs inspired by the home, studio and collections of trailblazing photographer Alice Austen. Drawing on her own studio-focused practice and Austen’s photographic documentation of her home’s interior decoration and fabric collections, Grabner’s work re-examines fabric patterns and materiality in doily making, expanding on repetitive design and layering. 

As an inventor, translator, copier and re-articulator of patterns, I predictably embrace Gombrich’s general observation that ‘the arrangement of elements according to similarity and difference and the enjoyment of repetition and symmetry extend from the string of beads to the layout of the page in front of the reader, and, of course, beyond to the rhythms of movement, speech and music, not to mention the structures of society and the systems of thought.’

When researching Alice Austen and her collections I was most taken with her negligible lace collection, a small box of snippets likely a practical assembly of remnants collected for mending Victorian collars and cuffs. Lace, like doilies and other domestic ornamental handiwork has varied craft and materials qualities but pattern invention is undemonstrative and mostly undeviating. Gombrich notes that decoration ‘changes slowly.’

Domestic ornamental work is practiced, produced and influenced by habit. Moreover domestic ornamental artifacts occupy habitual spaces, punctuating daily routine.

‘Radical invention is nonexistent, considerable invention the exception, and the gradual evolution of decorative motifs, some of which can be traced back for millenia, the rule.’

It is not for the lack of invention that compelled me to rearticulate and rearrange the excessively ornate patterns of lace and doilies but to challenge my aesthetic aversion to the white delicate complexity of lacework while at the same time pressing on painting’s suspicion of unoriginal abstractions. The works made for this exhibition seek to upend the Gombrichian pronouncement that ‘painting, like speaking, implicitly demands attention whether or not it receives it. Decoration cannot make this demand. It normally depends for its effect on the fluctuating attention we can spare while we scan our surroundings.’

– Michelle Grabner

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We’re hiring!

We're hiring!

The Alice Austen House is looking to expand our team with exciting openings in the following positions:

Available Positions

Director of Operations (Full-time)

LEARN MORE

Director of Education (Full-time)

LEARN MORE

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9/11 Commemoration 20 Years

Current Exhibition

At the beginning of 2021, cultural and preservation leaders met at the 9/11 Memorial Museum to discuss cultural institutions’ response to the 9/11 20th anniversary and plan arts programming to provide our communities with spaces to gather and reflect on the power of the arts in NYC to heal. The Alice Austen House presents 1977 Landmarks Commission photographs of historic Staten Island firehouses and a contemplative slideshow of all 5 boroughs to commemorate the heroic contributions of firefighters and their loved ones in response to the devastating tragedy on 9/11/2001.


All photos by:

Jerry Spearman

Photo by Jerry Spearman

9/11 Commemoration 20 Years

all photos by

Jerry Spearman

At the beginning of 2021, cultural and preservation leaders met at the 9/11 Memorial Museum to discuss cultural institutions’ response to the 9/11 20th anniversary and plan arts programming to provide our communities with spaces to gather and reflect on the power of the arts in NYC to heal. The Alice Austen House presents 1977 Landmarks Commission photographs of historic Staten Island firehouses and a contemplative slideshow of all 5 boroughs to commemorate the heroic contributions of firefighters and their loved ones in response to the devastating tragedy on 9/11/2001.


All photos by
Jerry Spearman

Exhibition Programming

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Exhibition Slideshow:



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The Photographer in the Garden

Current Exhibition

Since the invention of the medium, photographers have been drawn by the allure of flowers. This group exhibition excerpted from Aperture’s book The Photographer in the Garden celebrates the rich history of artists working in the garden as a site of inspiration and reinvention.


presenting artists:

Sam Abell, Alice Austen, Mack Cohen, Stephen Gill, Lonnie Graham, Justine Kurland, Lori Nix, Bill Owens, Sheron Rupp, Collier Schorr, Mike Slack

Lonnie Graham
Harry Noisette at The Garden of Enlightenment, Wilmot Frazier Elementary School, Spoleto, Charleston, SC 2002

Lori Nix
Wasps, 2002

The Photographer in the Garden

 

presenting artists

Sam Abell

Alice Austen

Mack Cohen

Stephen Gill

Lonnie Graham

Justine Kurland

Lori Nix

Bill Owens

Sheron Rupp

Collier Schorr

Mike Slack

Above: Collier Schorr, Arrangement #12 (Blumen) 2008

When photography was introduced to the public in 1939, it immediately began to displace the record-making function of other art forms, such as drawing and painting. At the time, photographs seemed to be a direct transcription of reality, precisely recording what was put in front of the camera or in contact with photographic materials. In creating these early transcriptions, it is not surprising that most photographers turned to gardens for inspiration. The earliest processes worked best when the photosensitive surface was fresh or still wet. They also required long exposures to an intense source of light. Thus, photographers engaged with subject matter found in their own backyards since those spaces were close to darkrooms, provided abundant light for their compositions and often contained botanical specimens that could be used to test the light sensitivity of the chemistry.

Contemporary photographers continue to call into question the human-nature relationship that these public and private spaces have inspired and create images that take the viewer on a journey. Careful looking reveals that the garden is not natural at all, human-made and that “paradise” requires caretakes to shape nature. When considered together, the photographs here illustrate the changing relationship between humans and nature from the nineteenth century to today. From private flowerbeds to sweeping public spaces, photographers have documented our ever-changing attitude toward the natural world.

Their history takes us from an agricultural society through industrialization and suburbanization to today’s global community engaged in discussions about past and present land use. A study of the garden could tell us as much about the gardener as it does about the beauty of blossoms and reveals as much about landscaping as it does about an individual’s relationship to nature. The difference is one of degree rather than kind.

EXCERPTED FROM THE ESSAY THE GARDEN AS A SUBJECT IN PHOTOGRAPHY BY JAMIE M. ALLEN, ASSOCIATE CURATOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY, GEORGE EASTMAN MUSEUM, ROCHESTER, NEW YORK.

PRODUCED IN PARTNERSHIP WITH

The Aperture Foundation

FUNDED BY

Northfield Bank Foundation, the National Endowment of the Arts, and the Department of Cultural Affairs.



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Two new exhibitions on view for the Fall season

 
ON VIEW 9/7 – 12/30 | Main Contemporary Galleries

The Photographer in the Garden

Since the invention of the medium, photographers have been drawn by the allure of flowers. This group exhibition excerpted from Aperture’s book The Photographer in the Garden celebrates the rich history of artists working in the garden as a site of inspiration and reinvention.

Presenting Artists
Sam Abell, Alice Austen, Mack Cohen, Stephen Gill, Lonnie Graham, Justine Kurland, Lori Nix, Bill Owens, Sheron Rupp, Collier Schorr, Mike Slack

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
ON VIEW 9/11 – 12/30 | Sunroom Gallery

9/11 Commemoration

At the beginning of 2021, cultural and preservation leaders met at the 9/11 Memorial Museum to discuss cultural institutions’ response to the 20th anniversary and plan performances to provide our community with spaces to gather and reflect on the power of the arts in NYC to heal. The Alice Austen House will join many other cultural institutions to light our building in blue on Saturday September 11 and be exhibiting vintage Landmarks Commission photographs of Staten Island firehouses from September 11 through December 30 in our contemporary sunroom gallery.

All Photos by Jerry Spearman

 

 

 

 

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Kelli Connell: Double Life, 20 Years

Kelli Connell’s twenty-year project with one model represents an autobiographical questioning of sexuality and gender roles that shape the identity of the self in intimate relationships.

"Windowsill", 2002

"Picnic", 2002

Kelli Connell: Double Life, 20 Years

 

Artist

Kelli Connell

 

Kelli Connell’s twenty-year project with one model represents an autobiographical questioning of sexuality and gender roles that shape the identity of the self in intimate relationships. The project explores polarities of identity such as the masculine and feminine psyche, the irrational and rational self, the exterior and interior self, and the motivated and resigned. By combining multiple photographic negatives of the same model in each image, the dualities of the self are defined by body language and clothing. The importance of these images lies in the representation of interior dilemmas portrayed as an external object: a photograph. Through these images, the audience is presented with “constructed realities”.



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Coming soon