Jackman Goldwasser Residency at Hyde Park Arts Center

I am proud to announce that I have been invited to be an artist in residence at the Hyde Park Arts Center for the second year of the Jackman Goldwasser Residency program.


February 22 – April 15, 2014

Kicking off the 2014 season, we’re happy to welcome New York-based Paul Mpagi Sepuya for his first visit to Chicago. Concerned with the structure and history of photography, Sepuya asks what it means for artists working with photography to be making portraiture today. Working primarily in color, Sepuya’s photographic practice is sited in the artist’s studio where he often portrays young men–friends and acquaintances–collapsing the space between the subject and photographer, highlighting the relationship between the two and his active role, despite being behind the camera. In his words, he attempts “to challenge the diminishment of the portrait photographer and assert the importance of the role of the artist as rooted in time and place.”  The studio also acts as an important space for editing where Sepuya works with both primary photograhs and re-photographed materials from the studio space itself, both of which define and document his practice. Through this process, Sepuya seeks “the possibility of return through reproduction…No two returns are the same.” Brian O’Doherty’s “collage of compressed tenses [within] studio time” allows for the emergence of a space between the documentary and the imaginary, of possibility. While in Chicago, Sepuya plans to mine queer legacies important to the development of Chicago’s cultural life, including Samuel Steward and the Society for Human Rights.

Sepuya’s work has been exhibited nationally and internationally, including at the Center for Photography at Woodstock, New York (2010), the Studio Museum in Harlem, New York (2010-2011), Franklin Art Works, Minneapolis, and Artspeak, Vancouver.

Residency Project

While in Chicago, Sepuya will be tracing legacies of individuals and institutions crucial to the development of Chicago’s queer culture. Echoing his practice, Sepuya’s studio at Hyde Park Art Center will be an important site for his experiments framing, cropping, and editing photographs.

Please join us for an Open Studio event on Saturday, February 22 from 2-4pm to meet Paul at the start of his residency!

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