Tyler Mitchell and Deborah Willis in conversation [Virtual Event]

double portraits - On Left is artist Tyler Mitchell, and on the right, artist, curator, and University professor Deborah Willis, Ph. D.

Hosted in conjunction with the exhibition
Tyler Mitchell: An Imaginative Arrangement of the Things Before Me
The Gordon Parks Foundation Gallery
through January 2, 2022

The Gordon Parks Foundation presents Tyler Mitchell: An Imaginative Arrangement of the Things Before Me, an exhibition of new works by artist Tyler Mitchell, a 2020 Gordon Parks Foundation Fellow, curated by Deborah Willis. Mitchell is known for his images that reflect and celebrate the vast beauty and intimacies of Black American life. Inspired by Gordon Parks’s photographs of Black families, Mitchell’s work constructs distinctive stories that reframe the notion of home as a center of Black life. Taking as a starting point private and public archives of family photographs, and engaging material references such as antique frames, carpet, upholstery, and porcelain plates that evoke domestic spaces, Mitchell has created a new series of images and a site-specific installation. By merging private memories with public narratives, he reimagines the collective histories of the African Diaspora and Black migration as a family portrait.

Join us for a live conversation between artist Tyler Mitchell and historian, author, educator, and artist Deborah Willis, followed by a Q&A.

Tyler Mitchell lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. He received a BFA from New York University Tisch School of the Arts. His work has been shown in solo exhibitions at Foam Fotografiemuseum in Amsterdam, as well as the International Center of Photography in New York. He has also been included in group exhibitions at the Aperture Foundation in New York, and Red Hook Labs in Brooklyn. He has lectured on the politics of image-making at Harvard University, Paris Photo, the International Center of Photography, and other institutions. Mitchell was awarded the 2020 Gordon Parks Foundation Fellowship, which culminated in this exhibition. 

Deborah Willis, PhD, is University Professor and Chair of the Department of Photography & Imaging at the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University. She is the recipient of the MacArthur Fellowship, a Guggenheim Fellowship and a member of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences.  She is the author of The Black Civil War Soldier: A Visual History of Conflict and Citizenship which was “longlisted” for the National Book Award and Posing Beauty: African American Images from the 1890s to the Present, among others. Professor Willis’s curated exhibitions include: “Tyler Mitchell: An Imaginative Arrangement of the Things Before Me,” "Framing Moments in the KIA," "Migrations and Meanings in Art", "Let Your Motto Be Resistance: African American Portraits” at the International Center of Photography; Out of Fashion Photography; Framing Beauty at the Henry Art Gallery and "Reframing Beauty: Intimate Moments" at Indiana University.

The Gordon Parks Foundation Gallery
Wednesday - Friday: 10a–4p
Saturday–Tuesday: Closed

Masks and proof of vaccination are required for entry.

Email info@mkfound.org for more information or to make an appointment.