Silver Eye

Silver Eye Center for Photography
Through April 15
Various times

It’s a pivotal year for Silver Eye Center for Photography, which is completing work on its brand new headquarters within the mixed-use Penn Mathilda development in Bloomfield. The big move from its long-time South Side facility will allow the 35-year-old photography center to design new exhibition galleries and add 900 square feet of educational and lab space.

While awaiting the grand opening along the Penn Avenue arts district, fans of contemporary photography can check out the latest exhibition organized by Silver Eye—which is taking work on the road to Pittsburgh Filmmakers Galleries.

Silver Eye
Kris Sanford, The Mentor, 2015. Courtesy of the artist.
Kris Sanford, The Mentor, 2015. Courtesy of the artist.

Don’t miss the free opening reception from 7 to 9 pm. this Friday. Attendees will be the first to see new portfolios by the just-announced winners of Silver Eye’s Fellowship 17 international photography competition, and will have the unique chance to meet the curator and artists and hear them speak about the show.

On view through April 15th, Fellowship 17 showcases work by International Award winner Kris Sanford and Keystone Award recipient Francis Crisafio.

A native of Mount Pleasant, MI, Kris Sanford will showcase her series titled, Through the Lens of Desire, which incorporates found photos from the 1920s through the 1950s. Placing a personal and 21st-century lens on vintage snapshots, Sanford’s process sheds new light on vernacular images that portray family events, private memories and intimate relationships.

Silver Eye
Francis Crisafio, Holdup in the Hood, 2008. Courtesy of the artist.

Exploring her own queer identity, as well as ideas about family history, desire, memory and fiction, Sanford curates and arranges images depicting women together and men together in order to suggest “implied narratives.” Originally created as personal keepsakes, the old photos have now become “moments that were never intended to be public.” Assistant professor at Central Michigan University, Sanford has exhibited and published work nationally and internationally in museums, galleries, libraries, and journals. In 2015, she was selected as a finalist for the LensCulture Exposure Awards.

Also featured will be HOLDUP in the HOOD by Pittsburgh-based artist Francis Crisafio. Exploring collaboration and self-portraiture, the work was created during an after-school arts program Crisafio runs in Manchester. The 13-year project provides young students with opportunities to work with a professional artist, analyze art, and develop their own artistic voices. The resulting works explore identity, self-perception, collage art, photography, found materials, and the role of the media.

Silver Eye
Kris Sanford, Boots, 2015. Courtesy of the artist.

Silver Eye’s Fellowship recognizes both rising stars and seasoned veterans from all corners of the globe. Since its inception, the program has awarded $55,000 in unrestricted grants and solo exhibitions to 22 emerging and mid-career photographers.

This year, Silver Eye received 196 applications from 16 countries. Juror for Fellowship 17 was Rebecca Senf, a curator at Tucson’s Center for Creative Photography and the Phoenix Museum of Art. The program also awarded Juror’s Commendations to 10 photographers from around the country.

Looking for more events? Check out our 11 Pittsburgh events not to miss in FebruaryTop 9 family events in Pittsburgh this January and our 17 can’t-miss Pittsburgh concerts in 2017 feature stories.

Jennifer has worked at the Mattress Factory, Brooklyn Museum of Art and Dahesh Museum of Art and is co-author of Pittsburgh Signs Project: 250 Signs of Western Pennsylvania. She also is co-coordinator of Handmade Arcade. Musically, she is in a band called The Garment District and is a founding member of Brooklyn's The Ladybug Transistor.