Adél Koleszár: 2017 Women In Photography (WIPNYC) Grant Short-List


Wounds of Violence
The series deals with geographical sites of Mexico where illegal, contemporary mass graves have been discovered, contrasting the local landscape that has been violated by these graves with the mental, physical consequences that these extremes has on women in the area. The photos portray women who have been subjected to these conditions, so searching for relief in alternative religions, drugs or the abuse have left visible marks on their bodies.                                                                                                              

The focus of my work in the past years has been human violence and its impact on society and individuals. I have been working and living in Mexico in the past years with the aim of completing my visual research on this subject. Although I present the places where horrible events have occurred, my aim is to experiment with a more metaphorical way of visualizing the level of cruelty that has occurred at these sites. To create an ominous atmosphere, a sense of conflict, to refer to the events, to leave space for the viewers to be able to submerge into that distant reality where extreme violence has become a daily norm. I utilized different image-making processes including filters to create a monochromatic depiction of the landscapes and by using the color of red, the symbol of blood and tension.

The fact that I am a woman, living and working in a country dominated by institutions of male power, has made me even more sensitive towards the fate of the local women who are exposed not only to institutional violence of the local government, narcos and criminals, but also gender violence and repression from their own families and lovers. Just as the sites of mass graves in Mexico have suffered a significant violation of the physical geography, so too the bodies of the women in these areas have suffered physical and mental abuse as well.

Adél Koleszár (1986) is originally from Hungary, where she graduated with a Masters in Fine Art Photography at the Moholy-Nagy University of Fine and Applied Arts, after receiving a BA degree in Social Sciences in Budapest. In the past three years, she has been working and living in Mexico, where she works with the aim of completing her visual research on human violence and repression. In 2013  she arrived to the country thanks to a Mexican Governmental Artist Residency Program, in 2014 her project on contemporary religions in Mexico was selected as finalist by Magnum Photos & Ideastap Photography Award, in 2015 she was the winner of the Budapest Portfolio Prize, in 2016-17 receiver of the Pécsi József Scholarship which supports the work of young Hungarian photographers.  Between march and may of 2016 she taught locals in several cities along the US/Mexican border as part of a self initiated, open and free to everyone workshop project, Vision del Norte, with the aim to teach the participants how to use the visual language of photography to express their thoughts about the reality they are living in, and share it with a wider public in a form of a book which compiled the vision of each participants. The same year she was the solo exhibitor of the Discovery Show section of the Fotofestiwal Lodz, and her book „New Routes of Faith” was shortlisted on the Unseen Photography Dummy Award. Her work was exhibited and published widely in her country and internationally, amongst in Berlin, Mexico City, New York, Arles, Vienna, and featured on Foam Spotlight, Vice Mexico, Fotografia Magazine, Der Grief. Currently she keeps working on new projects, as well as continous the investigation on the alternative religious forms in Mexico.

Lisa Lindvay: 2017 Women in Photography (WIPNYC) Grant short-list


I began making photographs of my father, two brothers and sister ten years ago when I moved away from my family for the first time to attend graduate school. My mother has always struggled with her mental health, in 2006 she sunk into a deep depression causing our family to unravel. For almost three years my mother was a ghost of herself, often locked in her bedroom not to be bothered. Unable to care for herself or all three of my siblings, my father took guardianship of my brothers, who are not his biological children, while my sister stayed with my mother and stepfather. This entropic period changed everything from our financial stability to our physical and mental health and understanding of ourselves. I felt an urgency to be at home - making photographs is my way of understanding the complexities of our situation.

The photographs are glimpses into the lives of my family members and our homes, of the private moments shared between my father, sister, brothers, and myself in the wake of my my mother’s deteriorating mental health. They depict our history and provide insight into our future. The photographs reveal our tenacity as we come to terms with our shifting family dynamic and home life and as my siblings transition into adulthood, while my father struggles to hold everything together.

In a wider context, my photographs are a portrayal of the inner workings of the American family navigating its way through instability, financial adversity, and the growing pains of adolescence. While my story is specific, the themes resonate across diverse cultural and economic lines.

Lisa Lindvay was born in 1983 in Erie, PA and currently resides in Chicago, IL. She earned her MFA in Photography from Columbia College Chicago (2009) and BFA in Applied Media Arts from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania (2006). Lindvay’s photographs have been exhibited in Chicago at Aspect/Ratio Projects, Johalla Projects, Weinberg/Newton, Hyde Park Art Center; nationally at Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, Washington (DC); Addison Gallery of American Art, Andover (MA); Weatherspoon Art Museum, Greensboro (NC); and Internationally at Turner Contemporary, Margate (ENG); among others. She is the recipient of the 3Arts Artist Award (2011) and Chicago Artadia Award (2012). See more at

Cristina Velásquez: 2017 Women in Photography (WIPNYC) Grant short-list


My recent work is motivated by my interest in photography as a way to push documentary conventions into the realm of pictorial depiction. Starting from observations of the human experience and life in my country, I reinterpret reality using elements of fiction and artifice to animate underlying power structures, confound assumptions, and question conventions. I am interested in borrowing narrative structures from Latin American literature, while at the same time questioning the very nature of narration and representation. Who is the narrator? Who is the reader? What is, and what is not part of the narrative?

Constructed photographs, formal portraits, and purely documentary still lifes, present an experimental counterpoint with the intention of transforming the way the reader generates meaning. Each image is embedded with its own logic of confrontation or avoidance. I believe there is a power in asking people to respond to images that might reroute what they think they know, or reveal something about their own misinformation.

Cristina Velásquez (Colombia) is an artist working mainly in photography and paper weavings. Her recent work investigates the role of representation and translation in the context of transcultural relationships. She is interested in the way cultural identity is constructed, defining shared notions of value, such as, race, beauty and class. Cristina received an MFA degree in Advanced Photographic Studies from Bard College and The International Center of Photography (New York, 2017), where she was awarded the ICP Director’s Scholarship. Velásquez currently lives and works in New York.

Anna Beeke: 2012 WIP–LTI/Lightside Materials Grant Recipient


My series of images about the forest began in a rather fanciful and serendipitous way:
Knowing I had been conceived in Washington State, but never having travelled to the Pacific Northwest, I was recently struck by the compulsion to go to the place where I began life and the conviction that if I did, I would surely find something there. What I discovered, or re-discovered, was the forest, and within it a more imaginative mindset. I grew up, like so many countless others, on the Brothers Grimm and various related fairy tales and myths. The forest plays a major role in the majority of these stories: as a place of enchantment, the landscape of an epic journey or the fulfillment of a quest, but also as the unknown, a dark and dangerous place outside the bounds of normal society where anything can happen, the battleground of good and evil. I am interested less in specific tales and more in the perceived mystery, magic, and danger of the forest, how these ideas have been constructed in our collective consciousness, and how they are reflected in contemporary reality. My working method follows the structure of many of these stories: I go into the forest seeking adventure and the unknown. Small moments of magic and surprise, delight and fear, and chance encounters with strangers along the way inform my direction; my experiences in the forest become not myth or written tale, but the images in this body of work.

Though I come from a photojournalistic training, I’ve always had serious misgivings about the politics of going into someone else’s territory and photographing, though I’ve done it quite a bit. The forest, to me, is an impartial province; it is both everybody’s forest and nobody’s forest. This makes it the perfect place for a photographic encounter, a neutral territory in which personal experience and the experience of others, the forest of today and the timeless forest, can intermingle without question. Though these images are—for all intents and purposes—documentary, I seek in their amalgamation the transmission of something more metaphoric; an appeal to the imagination, a suggestion to the subconscious, a departure from the strictly realistic. Though my project is now based mainly in the Hoh and Quinalt rainforests of Washington State, I hope to expand it to include chapters in other forests.

Anna Beeke was born in Washington, DC in 1984 and resides in Brooklyn, NY. She is currently pursuing her MFA at the School of Visual Arts (class of 2013), she is a graduate of the International Center of Photography’s certificate program in Photojournalism and Documentary Photography (2009), and she received her BA in English from Oberlin College (2007). Anna’s work is included in the book and exhibition: “reGeneration2: tomorrow’s photographer’s today;” she was also selected as a 2009 participant in the Eddie Adams Workshop and received the too much chocolate + Kodak film grant in 2010. Anna’s work has been exhibited internationally at galleries including ClampArt and the Aperture Foundation in NYC, the Musee de L’Elysee in Switzerland, the Michaelis School of Fine Art in South Africa, FAVA Gallery in Ohio, and at festivals such as Recontres d’Arles, the Flash Forward Festival, and the Pingyao International Photography Festival, and the Rencontres Internationales de la Photo de Fes. Website.

Tema Stauffer: 2012 WIP–LTI/Lightside Individual Project Grant Recipient


Paterson is a documentary series of street portraits depicting residents of Paterson, New Jersey during the years following the economic crisis in 2008. Paterson is a historic city near the Great Falls of the Passaic River, once prosperous from its mills and silk manufacturing industry. Founded in 1791 by Alexander Hamilton and others and envisioned as the nation’s first planned industrial city, Paterson offered jobs and opportunity to an immigrant labor force in the 19th and early 20th centuries, and it was a stop on the Underground Railroad. The city is the setting of two John Updike novels and one by Junot Diaz, and has inspired the poetry of William Carlos Williams and Allen Ginsberg, as well as the architectural photography of George Tice. The third largest city in New Jersey, Paterson began to decline economically during the 1960s and 70s, and has continued to face high rates of unemployment since the recession. Downtown Paterson is lined with dollar stores, barbershops, beauty salons, bakeries, bars, churches, temples, and clinics for addicts in recovery. While its downtown streets are bustling, these streets are also a place of visible struggle and desperation.

The portraits focus on the self-expression of working-class and economically marginalized Americans of the diverse racial and ethnic groups comprising Paterson’s population. Shot in natural light on the streets with a medium-format camera, each image explores the psychology of an individual who reveals him or herself willingly to the camera’s gaze. The minimal backgrounds suggest the urban environments these subjects occupy; however, these straightforward, realist, and classically composed photographs concentrate on faces and the depth of human experience that is spoken through them.

The medium of photography has historically – and notably through seminal work made during the Great Depression – represented Americans struggling with economic hardship and alienation, and it is this socially engaged and humanistic tradition that has deeply influenced the creation of this work. The portraits of the residents of Paterson contribute to a contemporary dialogue about the current economic reality and the experiences of Americans who exist on our ever-widening margins.

Tema Stauffer is a photographer based in Brooklyn whose work has been exhibited at Jen Bekman Gallery and Daniel Cooney Fine Art Gallery in New York, as well as galleries and institutions nationally and internationally, including a survey of Contemporary U.S. Photography at the Houston Fotofest 2010 Biennial. She graduated from Oberlin College in 1995 and received a Master’s Degree in Photography from The University of Illinois at Chicago in 1998. She teaches at the School at ICP, Ramapo College, and the College of Staten Island, and she has taught art courses at William Paterson University and a photography workshop at Toxico Cultura in Mexico City. She is also a curator and writer for Culturehall, an online resource for contemporary art, and contributes writing on contemporary photography to various arts publications. In 2010, she received an AOL 25 for 25 Award for innovation in the arts. Currently, she is a finalist for the Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition 2013 through the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery. See more here.


Cristina de Middel: 2011 WIP–LTI/Lightside Materials Grant Recipient


In 1964, still living the dream of their recently gained independence, Zambia started a space program in hopes of catching up with the USA and the Soviet Union. Their goal was to send the first African astronaut to the moon. Only a few optimists supported the project started by a schoolteacher named Edward Makuka. The financial aid never came and the heroic initiative turned into an exotic episode in African history, surrounded by wars, violence, droughts and hunger. As a self-proclaimed photojournalist, Middel is attracted to the eccentric lines of story telling, often avoiding clichés and overworked ideas. Her practice respects photographic ‘truth’ without allowing it to limit her approach, which is to push viewers to analyze patterns in stories we consume and real. 

Cristina de Middel (Spain, 1975) is a freelance photographer based in London. She works for newspapers and for NGO´s such as Doctors Without Borders and the Spanish Red Cross. Recent awards include the Spanish National Photojournalism Award Juan Cancelo, and a special mention at the New Fnac Photographic Talent Competition.  

She combines her documentary assignments with more personal projects. In her “B-side” work, Cristina deliberately asks the audience to question the language and the veracity of photography as a document by playing with reconstructions that blur the border between reality and fiction. See more here.

Brea Souders: 2011 WIP–LTI/Lightside Materials Grant Recipient


Humble Arts Foundation and Women in Photography are delighted to announce Brea Souders as the 2011 WIP–LTI/Lightside Materials Grant recipient. The $1,000 grant will support a new series of photographs that examine her European ancestry.

As an American with typically mixed bloodlines, I started this project to explore the many places in Europe where I have ancestry and their influence on me as an artist and a person. I created the very first photograph in this series in Italy in May, 2010, titled Sunburn in Naples. This image encapsulated my feelings – a desire to own my Italian ancestral roots, to be wholly a part of something, but an inability to do so. The Neapolitan sun burned the Irish skin that I inherited from my father’s father. Upon my return home I continued my work, creating images that reflect my research of Christianity, art history, European history, family traditions and my desire to connect all of the pieces together into one unified whole.

I recently completed a long residency in France, where I continued this project with a focus on the experience of living as a foreigner in a place where I have ancestry. The images created in France have taken a looser and more personal turn, with special attention to my own interaction with the French landscape and with objects that I found along the way. The images speak to sudden feelings of freedom, curiosity and transformation, and to a world that became larger, less static and more confounding. The resulting photographs reflect a shift that took place within me as a result of spending time in my ancestral country, France.

Brea Souders was born in Frederick, Maryland, and studied photography at the University of Maryland Baltimore County. Her work has been exhibited and screened at institutions such as Abrons Arts Center, Jack the Pelican Presents, and Affirmation Arts in New York City; the Corcoran Gallery of Art and the American University Museum, Washington, D.C; and at festivals including the New York Photo Festival; PhotoIreland in Dublin; the Singapore International Photography Festival, and Head On in Sydney, Australia. Her work has been supported by the Camac Art Centre and Fondation Ténot, Marnay-sur-Seine, France; The Millay Colony of the Arts, Austerlitz, NY and the Camera Club of New York.

Selected publications and clients include: New York Magazine, Gar-de, Vogue Paris, Real Simple, Dear Dave, Canteen, Warner Brothers Records, and Feltrinelli Publishing House. Brea lives and works in New York City. See more here.

Angela Strassheim: 2010 WIP-LTI/Lightside Individual Project Grant Recipient


Perhaps we have all processed a question in certain love relationships: Could we be a victim of violence or perform an act of violence against a loved one out of our immense capacity to feel jealousy, anger, rage, and desperation in a moment of extreme emotion?  These photographs allow for the viewer to entertain the idea that this situation could involve anyone of us. My past work in forensic photography, both photographing crime-scenes and documentation for DNA collection, led me to this project.

Evidence is a group of photographs taken at homes where familial homicides have occurred.  Long after the struggles have ended in these spaces, despite the cleaning, repainting and subsequent re-habitation of these homes, the “Blue Star” solution activates the physical memory of blood through its contact with the remaining DNA proteins on the walls. The black and white images are long exposures – from ten minutes to one hour – with minimal ambient night light pouring in from the crevices of windows and doors, capturing the physical presence of blood as a lurid glow.

The color images were taken upon arrival at each home in which there were approximately 140 different visited locations across the U.S. These photographs are evidence that I was physically present at the homes that I researched. They represent the mystery inside a box that is unattainable in a physical sense.  Each image title is a list of the murder weapons used, with-holding names and the gory details of the events.

The crime scene is presented on two levels; it is both an accurate, tragic, and dramatic transcription of the event and a mysterious backdrop onto which one can project their imagination.

American, b. 1969, Bloomfield, Iowa; lives and works in New York.  2003 MFA, Photography, Yale University, New Haven, CT .1997 Forensic & Biomedical Photography Certification, Metro-Dade County, Forensic Imaging Bureau, Miami, Fl.1995 BFA, Media Arts, Minneapolis College of Art and Design, Minneapolis, MN.  Featured in the 2006 Whitney Biennial and Musee d’ Elysee 50-reGeneration exhibition. Nationally and internationally exhibited in solo and group exhibitions.  Collected by museums and various private collectors. Awards include a Bush Fellowship, McKnight Fellowship, Jerome Fellowship, and an Artist Initiative Grant, was a finalist in 2008 for the Les Recontres D’ Arles International Photography Award.

Angela first pursued a career in Forensic Photography.  Instead, she now directs the camera toward the subject of family and the domestic environment. Her images “vacillate between what is immediately revealed on the surface and the unsettling nature of what is discovered upon further inspection.” In her first series, Left Behind, she took an introspective look at her own upbringing in a born-again Christian home.  In her second series, Pause, she explores what it means to be a daughter and examines the complex dramas that reveal themselves in relationships with the father and other male figures of significance.  In her most recent body of work, Evidence, she photographs in B&W with long exposures.  She has sought out homes where domestic homicides have happened in the past and provides a peek into the world of forensics with her technique to demonstrate the remains of DNA left behind.  This is still ongoing and has expanded to a new body of work about domestic violence.  Currently she is researching a long-term project in Israel that relates to women of the Bible.  

We are proud to announce that the 2nd annual 2010 WIP-LTI/Lightside Individual Project Grant in the amount of $3000 goes to Angela Strassheim for her project Evidence.

Tiana Markova-Gold: 2010 WIP-LTI/Lightside Individual Materials Grant Recipient


Isolation, Vulnerability and Courage: Sex Workers in Macedonia
In Macedonia, as throughout the world, sex workers are pushed to the margins of society by a combination of prejudice, discrimination, and violence. Sex workers inhabit a particularly vulnerable position in Macedonian society, facing harassment and violence not only from their clients and pimps, but also from law enforcement officials and other authorities. These abuses include physical violence, illegal detention, compulsory testing for sexually transmitted diseases, and rape, which are compounded by substandard enforcement of law and lack of access to health and support services.  Adding to these challenges are the risks of HIV/AIDS and other STDs, drug addiction, a hostile public attitude, and mass-media harassment. Because of the tremendous negative stigma connected to prostitution in Macedonia, most sex workers are living double lives, concealing the fact that they are sex workers from their families and the communities in which they live. A disproportionate number of street-based sex workers, those most vulnerable, are members of the Roma community, Macedonia’s most harshly discriminated against ethnic minority group. Gay and transgender sex workers are often targeted and further marginalized because of their sexual or gender orientation.

Building upon my previous long-term projects documenting the lives of sex workers in New York City, I spent several weeks in the spring of 2010 photographing and recording the stories of sex workers in Macedonia. I collaborated closely with Healthy Options Project Skopje (HOPS) to create the body of work, spending many days at their drop-in center, joining the outreach team in the streets and in the Roma community, and visiting sex workers in their homes. I recorded hours of audio interviews and conversations with the people I photographed, as well as the sounds of the streets and rooms where they live and work. Because of the sensitivity of the topic and the previous negative exposure sex workers have suffered in Macedonian media, it was essential to me to not only work closely with HOPS, but also to discuss the project directly with the sex workers themselves. Almost all of the people I photographed in Macedonia were eager to tell their stories but asked that I conceal their identities from the viewer; they wanted to be seen and heard but were terrified of being exposed. Theirs are stories of fear, isolation and vulnerability, but also of survival and courage in the face of relentless abuse and alienation.

Tiana Markova-Gold is a freelance documentary photographer based in Brooklyn, New York. She received a New York Times Scholarship to attend the full-time Photojournalism Program at the International Center of Photography in 2006-07. She has traveled extensively, documenting social issues with a particular focus on women and girls.  Tiana’s photographs have been recognized in numerous photography contests including Pictures of the Year International, New York Photo Awards, PDN Photo Annual, American Photography and the International Photography Awards.  Her work has been included in exhibitions at Sasha Wolf gallery, New York Photo Festival, HOST gallery in London, England and the Lumix Festival of Young Photojournalism in Hannover, Germany.

Since the spring of 2007, Tiana has been working on an in-depth project about the lives of women in prostitution in New York City. In January 2009 she traveled throughout Asia on a photography fellowship from the Johnson & Johnson Foundation, photographing social services projects in nine countries across the region. In April and May 2009 she traveled to Nigeria and Brasil as the recipient of a fellowship from Global Fund for Children and the Nike Foundation, documenting the work of several local organizations whose aim is to empower, protect and educate adolescent girls and young women. She is a 2010 New York Foundation for the Arts Fellow in Photography and 2010 recipient, with writer Sarah Dohrmann, of the Dorothea Lange-Paul Taylor Prize from the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University for If You Smoke Cigarettes in Public You Are a Prostitute: Women and Prostitution in Morocco. website 

We are proud to announce that the 2010 WIP-LTI/Lightside Individual Materials Grant, providing $1000 in artists choice of Kodak materials has been awarded to Tiana Markova-Gold for her project documenting social issues surrounding sex workers in Macedonia.

Erica Allen: 2009 WIP–LTI/Lightside Materials Grant Recipient


Untitled Gentlemen
Untitled Gentlemen is a series of fictional portraits created using anonymous faces from contemporary barbershop hairstyle posters, combined with figures from discarded studio photographs. 

Through interventions in these found photographs, this work explores representations and constructions of identity in portraiture, while appropriating value to images and individuals who are otherwise overlooked.

Existing between the real and artificial, these images subvert the meaning and expectations of the traditional studio portrait, creating an unknown narrative and expressive ambiguity in an unexpected context. 

Once primarily functional photographs, these barbershop portraits become unusually candid and vulnerable representations of masculinity.  Adopting new identities while remaining anonymous, these new portraits are known only by the hairstyle number found on the original poster.

I am interested in shifting the frame of how we encounter and interpret images to investigate the meaning and construction of the photograph. This series encourages the viewer to reflect upon ideas of representation and projections of identity in photography. 

Erica Allen is a Brooklyn based artist originally from Oakland, California. She received her MFA in Photography, Video and Related Media from the School of Visual Arts. Awards for her work also include the Aaron Siskind Scholarship, Daylight Photo Awards Juror’s choice and residency at the Vermont Studio Center. Her work has been featured in the Visual Arts Journal, Photograph, The New Yorker, Marie Claire, Outlook, PDN, Zing and Esopus magazine. She has exhibited at The Center for Fine Art Photography, The Camera Club of New York, The Center for Photography at Woodstock, with the Humble Arts Foundation and Higher Pictures. Untitled Gentlemen is included in the Beinecke Library collection at Yale University. She more here.

Erika Larsen: 2009 WIP-LTI/Lightside Individual Project Grant Recipient


Sami, The People
I have seen the Arctic as a place where the extremes play out in the daily lives of the people that inhabit this land. It is a place where man has learned to adapt to the environment that surrounds him rather than adapting the environment to him. Here I found the Sámi, which translates to ‘The People.’ They are the indigenous people living in the Arctic Circle region of northern Scandinavia and it is the largest area in the world with an ancestral way of life based on the seasonal migrations of the animals. The Sámi are by tradition reindeer herders and live a nomadic lifestyle based on the reindeer migration.

I have come on a search to understand the primal drive of the modern hunter by taking an inclusive look at an original hunter-gatherer society. I have come to see if when the land speaks there are those that can interpret its language. I have come in search of silence so that I could begin to hear again.

I will spend the next year exploring the Sámi’s symbiotic relationship with the environment. They are the only people who can own and sell wildlife in Scandinavia. By possessing a livelihood that is dependent on their surroundings the Sami are acutely aware of the changes in nature. They have managed to survive in extreme climatic circumstances for ages. I believe that through exploring this culture I will better understand our role as stewards of the earth.

Erika Larsen’s (American, born 1976) most notable bodies of work, ‘Young Blood’ and ‘The Hunt’ look intimately at hunting culture in North America, its connection with nature and its role in the cycle of life and death. She has been recognized by World Press Photo, American Society of Magazine Editors, American Photography, Society of Photographers, and New Jersey State Council of the Arts. Her work has been exhibited internationally. Erika is currently on a Fulbright fellowship to document the daily life and culture of the Sami people living in the Scandinavian Arctic. website

We are very pleased to present the WIP-Lightside Individual Project Grant to Erika Larsen for her project Sami, The People.