Immediate Surroundings: The 2017 En Foco Photography Fellowship

The En Foco Photography Fellowship awards artists a $1,000 honorarium to support new or existing work. The fellowships culminate in a group exhibition and the subject of a Nueva Luz issue.

The 2017 winners Byron Smith, Cinthya Santos-Briones, Daesha Devón Harris, Daniel Martinez, Erika Morillo, Jon Santiago, Lisa DuBois, Rhea Karam, Nichole Washington, and Santana Copeland, were featured in Immediate Surroundings, curated by Gabriel de Guzman.

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Byron Smith’s series, Mosul Offensive 2016, is a photographic quest to document and understand the consequences of a U.S- backed war between the Iraqi Army and ISIS, for civilians in Mosul, Iraq.

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Cinthya Santos Briones’ series, Abuelas: Portraits of the Invisible Grandmothers, honors the culture and experiences of undocumented Mexican grandmothers, while exploring the women’s relationships with their environments and their identities.

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Daesha Dévon Harris‘ series, Just Beyond the River, uses the visual language of Negro folklore along with personal, and cultural histories to re-examine the current and historical discourse on race and the ongoing struggle for freedom.

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Daniel Martinez’s series, A Gated Community, is an exploration of home. For Martinez, this project documents, represents and presents the people, places and experiences that make the Bronx home.

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Erika Morillo’s series, Umbral, seeks to find the balance between the idealized version of childhood that adulthood offers, and the realities we offer our own children.

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Jon Santiago’s long term project, Bengal, documents the effects of climate change on Bangladesh, which is in Bengal, one of the most impacted regions in the world. Hundreds of thousands of migrants are forced to flee their homes because of calamity and hardship.

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Lisa Dubois’ series, Holy Water, is a visual comparison of the spiritual significance of water in ritual practices, across different faiths and religions in Eastern and Western cultures.

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Nichole Washington’s series, For My Girls, is a celebration of the intersection of black womanhood, and the female energies of 90’s Hip-hop. For My Girls is a call for sisterhood, and empowerment.

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Rhea Karem’s series, Déraciné (Uprooted,) uses the image of trees from New York, in urban landscapes that lack green spaces in Lebanon, to challenge the contemporary ideas of placement, and identity.

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Santana Copeland’s series, BlackWhiteColor, deconstructs the complex urban landscape and reduces the banality of overlooked buildings, electric wiring, and scaffolding to their parts and in doing so offers abstract perspectives on urbanity.

 

Curator’s Statement