En Foco Fellowship Winners
En Foco is proud to announce the ten winners of its 2021 Photography Fellowship Program who were selected from a pool of 134 applicants. In addition to the $1,000 award the Fellowship recipients will participate in the 2021 Fellowship Digital Exhibition opening June 1 at WallWorks New York.
Designed to support photographers of color who demonstrate the highest quality of work as determined by a photography panel of peers and industry professionals, this year’s awardees include Richard Acevedo, Argenis Apolinario, Roy Baizan, Daveed Baptiste, Kevin Quiles Bonilla, Amarise Carreras, Vinay Hira, Sydney King, Spandita Malik, and Bashira Webb.
The Fellowship initiative affirms En Foco’s ongoing commitment to the financial support of artists of color, and serves to inform exhibition organizers and curators of an existing pool of quality under recognized artists.
Richard Acevedo studied media while attending college. He started as an intern and worked his way up to become the Head Video Editor and Photographer at the multimedia center at Lehman College. In hopes of giving everything he does a greater purpose, Acevedo spends time pushing his creative boundaries by learning new software and technical skills.
Argenis Apolinario is of Puerto Rican and Dominican heritage and grew up in the Bronx. He attended Laguardia High School with an interest in drawing and painting then studied fine arts at The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art. There he expanded his visual language, analytical perception, and technical skills and became more interested in photography. After college, he continued his professional and creative relationship with photographic exploration. In 2020, Argenis’s photography was featured in En Foco’s online exhibition Asymptomatic/Systematic
Roy Baizan is a Chicanx documentary photographer and arts educator from the Bronx whose work focuses on community, environment, and identity. Shortly after graduating from the International Center of Photography’s Teen Programming, they became a teaching assistant. This would put them on a path to become an educator focusing on empowering the city’s youth through visual storytelling and community service. They have since worked for The Bronx Documentary Center, The Point, The Bronx River Art Center, and ICP continuing to create safe, supportive learning environment’s through visual arts. In 2018 they graduated from the Visual Journalism and Documentary Practice Program at ICP with the support of the Wall Street Journal Scholarship and Board of Directors Scholarship. Recently Photoville has featured them as an artist to watch in 2020. Their work has been published in The New York Times, America Magazine, The Intercept, Remezcla, and HBO Latino.
David Baptiste is a multidisciplinary maker working in fashion design, photography, and textiles. His migration from Haiti to America inspires all his work. As an immigrant and queer person, his work examines the multidimensional identities of the Caribbean diaspora living in the United States. Through collaborative projects and various mediums, his work aims to decolonize notions of race, gender, and class within the Haitian community and greater Caribbean diaspora. He is a recent Parsons graduate with a BFA in Fashion Design. His photographs have been published in The New Yorker, American Vogue, and has been exhibited at Red Hook Labs, Photoville, and Aperture. He is currently a 2020 Lakou NOU resident at the Haiti Cultural Exchange.
Kevin Quiles Bonilla is an interdisciplinary artist born in San Juan, Puerto Rico. He received a BA in Fine Arts – Photography from the University of Puerto Rico (2015) and an MFA in Fine Arts from Parsons The New School for Design (2018). His work has been presented in Puerto Rico, The United States, Mexico, China, Belgium, and Japan. He’s the recipient of an Emerging Artist Award from The John F. Kennedy Center (2017). He has recently presented his work at The Brooklyn Museum, Queens Museum, The 8th Floor Gallery, Dedalus Foundation, and the Leslie-Lohman Museum’s Project Space. He has been an artist in residence at Art Beyond Sight’s Arts + Disability Residency (2018-2019), Leslie-Lohman Museum’s Queer Performance Residency (2019), and LMCC’s Workspace Residency (2019-2020). He explores ideas around power, colonialism, and history with his identity as context. He currently lives in New York City.
Amarise Carreras is a photo-based performance artist from Queens, New York City. They received their BFA in Photography and Film from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2018. They examine their past and present history through co-writing narratives that center their matriarchal lineage. They explore identity within their diasporic experience through installation, performance, and documentation. Amarise has shown in galleries such as Candela Gallery, Transmitter, and is currently featured in Aperture Magazine’s Utopia, Winter 2020 Issue.
Vinay Hira is a multidisciplinary artist based in Manhattan, New York. His self-referential aesthetic and varied self-taught technique produces work that distorts the image of a charming commonwealth brown boy – making audiences simultaneously experience his familiarity and his otherness. Hira’s work dips in and out of pop culture, existing in the liminality between eccentricity and instability where our deepest desires and greatest insecurities threaten to spill from our mouths – it is his journey as both an artist and a human. Hira is a trained marine scientist and plant pathologist who was flung into artistic notoriety while working in sterling bond investment in the bourgeois New Zealand suburbs.
Sydney King is a Brooklyn-based artist working primarily in large format photography. Her work explores the physicality of photography, its relationship to the body, and its potential to create new realities and histories. King graduated magna cum laude from Princeton University in 2017 and attended the Yale School of Art Norfolk residency in 2016. Her work has been exhibited at the International Center of Photography Museum, the Broodthaers Society of America, the Dean Collection, Chashama, Site: Brooklyn, the Lewis Center for the Arts, and others. She completed a residency at the Virginia Center for Creative Arts in July 2019 and is a member of the founding cohort of Cereus Art. She will be a Session Artist at Recess Art in 2021, collaborating with movement artist Ogemdi Ude to realize their project Living Relics.
Spandita Malik is a New York-based artist from India. Her work is concerned with the current global socio-political state of affairs with an emphasis on women’s rights and gendered violence. Malik specializes in process-based work in photography, recently with photographic surface embroideries and collaborations with women in India. Malik received her MFA in Photography from Parsons School of Design in 2019. She was awarded the Firecracker Photographic Grant and South Asian Arts Resiliency Grant. She was chosen for Studio Vortex Artist Residency by Antoine d’Agata in Arles, France (2018); Baxter St Workspace Residency in New York (2020); Feminist Incubator Residency by Project for Empty Spaces in New Jersey (2020); and The Center for Photography at Woodstock Artist in Residency Program, Woodstock, NY (2021). Malik’s work has been featured in magazines like Musée Magazine and Harper’s Magazine, she was named ‘Ones to Watch 2020’ by the British Journal of Photography.
Bashira Webb was born in Baltimore and raised in the Bronx. She began photography classes at a little-known program in the South Bronx called ICP at the Point. After three years of training there, she was awarded the Jocelyne Benzakin Fellowship. The program served as a stepping stone to further her education and begin classes at the International Center of Photography in Manhattan, where she was mentored by established photojournalists. Shortly after, she formed a collective with her peers called the NYC Bridge Project, whose purpose was to give back to the community and teach a younger generation the importance of telling their own stories through photography. In 2008, the NYC Bridge Project was awarded a grant by the W. Eugene Smith Memorial Fund to help support its growth. To this day, Bashira continues educating young minds.
En Foco is a non-profit organization that nurtures and supports contemporary fine art and documentary photographers of diverse cultures, primarily U.S. residents of Latino, African and Asian Heritage, and Native Peoples of the Americas and the Pacific. Since it was founded in 1974, En Foco has been an outspoken leader and advocate for the equitable support and access to resources for photographers of color. It has a distinguished itself through its sustained commitment to providing its primary constituency and the communities they represent financial support, public programming, information services and cultural advocacy initiatives.
The En Foco Photography Fellowship is designed to support photographers of color who demonstrate the highest quality of work as determined by a photography panel of peers and industry professionals. The Photography Fellowship Program will award 10 Fellowships at $1,000 per artist, a Fellowship Group Exhibition, and feature the Fellows in A Nueva Luz publication printed and online editions.