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This conversation between artist Dawoud Bey and Gary Carrion-Murayari, Kraus Family Curator at the New Museum, was hosted in conjunction with the exhibition “Grief and Grievance: Art and Mourning in America.” This public program series highlights the practices of artists participating in the exhibition.

Dawoud Bey is an American photographer who has spent the past forty years moving across genres, from street photography to portraiture to landscapes, to create a fuller, more complex picture of American society. His work has served to highlight both personal narratives and collective histories within the African-American community. Bey’s The Birmingham Project (2012), which is featured in the New Museum exhibition, commemorates the lives of six young African Americans killed on September 15, 1963, in the bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church and the ensuing protests in Birmingham, Alabama.

Born in New York, NY, Bey earned his MFA from Yale University School of Art, and is currently a Professor of Art and a former Distinguished College Artist at Columbia College Chicago. His works have exhibited by and included in numerous institutional collections such as Addison Gallery of American Art, Art Institute of Chicago, Brooklyn Museum, Detroit Institute of Arts, Fogg Art Museum at Harvard University, High Museum of Art in Atlanta, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Museum of Modern Art, NY, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Studio Museum in Harlem, Whitney Museum of American Art, National Gallery of Art, and other museums worldwide.

He has been honoured with numerous fellowships over the course of his long career, including a MacArthur “Genius Award” Fellowship, as well as a United States Artists Fellowship, a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship, and a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, among many others.

FEATURED IMAGE: Dawoud Bey, Fred Stewart II and Tyler Collins, from the series The Birmingham Project, 2012. Archival pigment prints mounted on Dibond, 40 x 64 in (101.6 x 162.6 cm). © Dawoud Bey. Courtesy Rena Bransten Gallery, San Francisco, CA and Rennie Collection, Vancouver

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