Curator Selection / 2020 / /
The Year of the Coronavirus
Sylvia de Swaan
Sylvia de Swaan
My five submitted images were all taken within the month of April 2020 in the city of Utica, NY where I have lived since the mid 1980s. It's a post industrial town, that attracts artists to come here to work on ambitious projects at an organization called Sculpture Space (of which I was the founding director) and its become a multicultural hub. a welcoming by refugees from all the worlds' war zones. The city's weak point is its downtown, which for many years has suffered from aging infrastructure and poor city planning. Plans are currently underway to build a downtown hospital.
I’m a fine art and documentary photographer who works on several long term projects concurrently. I’m a traveler, explorer and seeker. Having been displaced from my original culture at an early age I feel both out of place and at home anywhere I go. My work deals with transience, loss, memory, identity, displacement, rootedness, and the layers of history coexist in the present. I’m interested in the construction of narrative and how meaning is created and altered through juxtaposition and editing.
Awards My photographic works have earned me grants, residencies and fellowships from a variety of sources, including Art Matters, The Aaron Siskind Foundation, CEC/ArtsLink travel grants, Light Work, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Bemis Center for Contemporary Art; Austrian Ministry of Culture, Constance Saltonstall Foundation, Anderson Ranch Art Center, four fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts (1994, 1998/2008/2016) and the Creative Artists Project Grant by the Society for Photographic Education. My work have been exhibited regionally, nationally and internationally.