“Making photographs that describe human connection is the least difficult part of my artistic mission. The challenge lies in presenting the work imaginatively and provocatively; to bring an audience to a new understanding of that love.”
Lori Waselchuk’s (b. 1964) photographs of post-Katrina New Orleans and the hospice at Angola Prison in Louisiana bring us into intimate contact with these complex subjects. Captivated at an early age by news photos in LIFE magazine, Waselchuk’s work is project-based and interactive; she engages in conversation and collaboration with the people she photographs, which often leads to new and unexpected artistic directions. Grace Before Dying, her photographic documentary about the Louisiana prison hospice, generated a publication and a traveling exhibition that showed in prisons and public spaces in Philadelphia; Boise, ID; Washington, DC; and elsewhere. Waselchuk’s images have appeared in magazines and newspapers worldwide, including Newsweek, Time, LIFE, the New York Times, and the Los Angeles Times. In 2013, she received a Leeway Transformation Award from the Leeway Foundation.
With support from the Center, Waselchuk attended a National Press Photographers Association multimedia immersion workshop in May 2013, in order to learn new skills in this area. She is currently interviewing and photographing block captains in various Philadelphia neighborhoods for a new portrait and multimedia project, Them That Do, that reveals the individual and shared histories of the city’s diverse citizenry. In the spring of 2014, Waselchuk was featured in a photography exhibition at the Mainline Art Center in Haverford, PA: Humankind, which focused on social responsibility, portraiture, and the photo essay.
Bhob Rainey is a soprano saxophonist, composer, and a 2013 Pew Fellow whose interests lie in new realms of artistic possibility.
David Ellsworth is a visual artist and a 1999 Pew Fellow.
This month’s Pew Fellows news highlights include a new opera from Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Jennifer Higdon, a Hodder Fellowship through Princeton University for set designer and theater artist Matt Saunders, and new exhibition works by artists Tim Portlock, Jane Irish, Alex Da Corte, and more.
In this month’s Pew Fellows news highlights, novelist Beth Kephart describes seeing the landscape of her unwritten novel through the eyes of videographer Lori Waselchuk. Composer Bhob Rainey makes music out of squid neurons and mathematical formulas, and poet Major Jackson discusses the simple act of paying attention.
Catherine Morris is curator at the Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art at the Brooklyn Museum.
Filmmaker and Pew Fellow David Scott Kessler on creating environmentally-conscious art, turning limitations into creative assets, and more.
Playwright and Pew Fellow James Ijames talks about how history influences his work, the importance of failure, and more.
Recognized as a pioneering jazz bassist and composer who has played with numerous musical luminaries over his 60-year career, Merritt composes work that brings forth collective improvisation within a complex rhythmic and harmonic language.
In 2002 the Center awarded Pew Fellowships to 12 Philadelphia-based artists, and grants to 57 dance, music, theater, and visual arts organizations and practitioners in the greater Philadelphia region.
Bruce Allardice has been the managing director of the multidisciplinary Ping Chong + Company since 1988. He was a Center panelist in theater in 2010.
Exhibitions funded by the Center, as well as Pew Fellow Ryan Trecartin’s 55th Venice Biennale installation, made several top 10 lists in Artforum’s Best of 2013 December issue.
Marshall Belford Allen, a 2012 Pew Fellow, has been an active member of the Sun Ra Arkestra for over 50 years, and has helmed the historic jazz group since 1995, following the death of jazz pioneer Sun Ra.