Tell us about yourself, how long you have worked as a staff member at Latitude?
My name is Mandela Hudson and I’m a visual artist with a concentration in Photography. I started at LATITUDE this past January and it was the smartest decision I made in 2017. I’m originally from Detroit, MI but I’ve lived in Chicago for over a decade now. My passion for the art form started about 5 years ago when I purchased my first camera from a friend for about $35, since then I've been on a relentless quest to learn and find my voice as an photographer.
What ideas, materials or people sit at the center of the work you do?
My community and the aim to achieve ultimate self love are definitely at the center of my work. On a daily basis I’m surrounded by a number of incredible artist, the dedication and overall love for creating has been a major driving force in my work. I personally believe that we’re in some type of artistic renaissance.
How do you make you work, what environment(s) do you make art within?
Before my photographs are made I think about my intended goal which is to produce a print. Most of the art starts with my 35mm point and shoot, a nice pair of walking shoes, and the willpower to explore different regions of the world. The automatic camera is used as a tool to record a photographic diary. After processing and viewing the snapshots, little notes regarding my thoughts of the picture and its overall look and appeal are written down. Most of my images are taken multiple times just in different photographic formats. After capturing the photo, I can then go to a production space like LATITUDE and scan my negatives, get assistance with editing software such as lightroom and photoshop, and produce a museum quality print all in a span of about 3-4 hours.
List five things that changed the way you look at/ make images?
The August and Megumi Kagurazaka exhibition by Nobuyoshi Araki. I visited the Foam Museum back in 2015, the show was visually stunning.
Space is the Place, a science fiction film released in 1974 by Sun Ra.
I had the opportunity to attend one of John H. White photo critique classes at Columbia College. John is hands down one of the greatest photojournalist and educators to ever live, extremely inspirational. He’s like a motivational speaker who uses a camera as one of his instruments.
Pusher Trilogy, Drive, Only God Forgives, pretty much anything that Nicolas Winding Refn makes.
Malick Sidibé black and white silver gelatin prints I saw at an exhibition a few years back.
Describe yourself as a piece of furniture?
Interesting question. I’ve never thought about myself as a piece of furniture but I asked a few of my closes friends and family they all said a mirror. Lol, I never saw a reflection of myself I didn't like.
Follow Mandela on Instagram with handle: mandeluh !