DIRECTOR'S CHOICE: Artist's Statement

First Place: Sandra Chen Weinstein


Archival Print. 12"18"

This is a story of relationships but most importantly, love. This collection of intimate portraits and stories of people and their loved ones, families or chosen families, including my own, from diverse LGBTQ community which constantly struggles for equality and acceptance.

My adult child came out as queer, transgender, non-binary and is collaborating with me in writing in this book. This series of 30 family images are displayed with their own quotes and stories about themselves and their loved ones. The work seeks to aid social justice against stereotype and stigma that have long existed.

DIRECTOR'S CHOICE: Artist's Statement

Second Place: Noelle Mason

X-Ray Vision vs. Invisibility

X-Ray Vision vs. Invisibility is a body of work about the phenomenological effects of vision technologies on the perception of undocumented migrants and refugees.

DIRECTOR'S CHOICE: Artist's Statement

Third Place: Cody Bratt

The Other Stories

Mixed media and pigment prints, sizes various, all editions 1/1

My family grapples with a lineage of abuse and neglect which converge at my great-grandfather, who described himself as a poet, labor champion and photographer. As I began to restore his photographic archive, I wondered whether these other, hidden stories were visible from the photographs and, if they are, what they might mean to me. Had I also inherited this darkness? I explore these questions utilizing tears, tape, glue and other techniques to combine and remix the photographs with ephemera from the archive itself.

DIRECTOR'S CHOICE: Juror's Statement

Rubén Esparza

Independent Curator; Founder and Director, Queer Biennial

I was impressed by the quality and diversity of work—it was truly difficult to select top-tiered work. I made new discoveries that I will follow and explore.

My own personal criteria for discerning art and photography is to look at work that represent technical and aesthetic shifts from what is already out there; a new take or observation of the zeitgeist, the sociopolitical, and cultural pronouncements. The work that I selected touches on these points. These particular works of art (photography) shine a light on people living in the margins of communities and are usually maligned and, or scapegoated. To focus on these subjects is to acknowledge them and to speak truth to societal ills.

Work that mostly focuses on clever composition and color imaginations is much appreciated, but not enough for highlighting at this particular juncture.