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THE FINE ART PHOTOGRAPHY PROGRAM

Our fine art photography program provides annual financial, logistic, and creative support to a single gay fine art photographer of color in order for him to create an original fine art photography exhibit that focuses on gay men of color and their communities. The exhibits that are produced by the photographers in our program are artistically rigorous and socially and politically engaging. The goals of our fine art photography program are to boost support for gay fine art photographers of color and to increase the amount of quality fine art photography that is authentically representative of gay men of color and their communities.


Basics:

  • A single fine art photographer is selected each year through an interview process to create ERA’s annual fine art photography exhibit

  • The selected photographer receives an award of $5,000

  • [ERA] pays for all costs incurred in creating and exhibiting the photography including props, travel, models, printing, framing, installation, and any other necessities

  • The program is only open to gay men of Latin, Native, Asian, African, or Arab descent

  • The photographer must use the men in [ERA]’s Visual Talent Program

  • The resulting exhibit must focus on gay men of color and their communities

  • Preference is given to photographers who can work in a multidisciplinary setting and borrow elements from literature, film, history, and other areas of study and artistic production in the creation of their exhibit


Goals:

  • Increase the amount of art by gay men of color for gay men of color

  • Help financially stabilize gay male photographers of color who face tremendous economic barriers to creating their work

  • Create socially engaged art that begins to shift our cultures toward justice

  • Increase opportunity and exposure for gay male photographers of color and help them gain access to culturally influential institutions and audiences

  • Increase authentic representation for gay men of color

  • Produce artistically rigorous and high quality exhibits


Strategies:

  • Funding the creation of new fine art photography that centers on gay men of color and is produced by a gay male fine art photographer of color

  • Offering a generous stipend plus all expenses paid so that the photographer can be well compensated and able to have funds to sustain himself. In addition, we have an extremely generous profit sharing package where the photographer receives 50% of all net profits made from art sales

  • Making sure that all of our art has political messaging. We do not do “art for art’s sake” productions

  • Having the opening exhibit at the Museum of Photographic Arts in San Diego and then coordinating a tour at comparable locations in Southern California. We also make sure key funders and arts administrators are in attendance at the opening shows. Lastly, we connect the photographer with vast media exposure such as Out or DNA

  • Insuring that the photographer is well versed in the topic that he is shooting and setting clear guidelines for each piece that is proposed to ensure it does not reproduce damaging cultural narratives

  • Selecting the best gay male fine art photographers of color through a rigorous application process that includes looking at their past portfolio and examining their social justice commitments