CITY | SPRING 2017

Juror: Derrick Woods-Morrow

“Architecture and urban design ‘frame’ space… Action is structured and shaped by walls, doors and windows, framed by the decisions of designers. As a form of discourse, built form constructs and frames meanings… The built environment reflects the identities, differences and struggles of gender, class, race, culture and age. It shows the interests of people in empowerment and freedom, the interests of the state in social order, and the private corporate interest in stimulating consumption.”  - Kim Dovey, Framing Places: Mediating Power in Built Form

“From a Lefebvrian or psychoanalytic perspective, it can be suggested that the Manhattan skyline is not just about an alliance between a phallic format of space and abstract (capitalist) power relations, but also about a bourgeois coupling of ‘Ego’ and ‘Phallus.' Space is produced under the tyranny of three intersecting, aligned lines of power: masculinity, the bourgeois family, and capitalism. So, in concert, these powers produce the rhythms of New York, New York.” - Steve Pile, The Body and the City

Benjamin Hoste | www.benjaminhoste.com

On April 12, 2015,  Freddie Gray was arrested by Baltimore police and thrown in the back of a police van and driven around his neighborhood for nearly an hour. Once at the Western District Police Station an ambulance was summoned and he was taken to a hospital, never to return home. He died a week later on April 19, 2015. Baltimore police essentially drove Freddie Gray through his neighborhood for the last time–past places he lived, went to school, hung out with friends, grew up. The weight of this experience, being toured through one’s home while writhing in pain, never to return again, is overwhelming. If there had been a window for Freddie Gray to peer out of, this is what he might have seen. But he wasn’t just passing waypoints from his own life. The history of the Sandtown-Winchester neighborhood, where Freddie Gray grew up and was arrested, is rich with heritage. It was once referred to as Baltimore’s Harlem, with the likes of Billie Holiday and Diana Ross frequently performing at neighborhood clubs and theaters. Thurgood Marshall was raised in the area. Freddie Gray passed by these places as well, and many others that mark the best of times and the worst of times for those who live in Sandtown today. By using known locations from Freddie Gray’s arrest timeline and imagining the path he may have taken between these points, what were the final moments of Freddie Gray’s life can be used to construct a periscope to view the America we live in today.

Benjamin Hoste is a non-fiction, documentary photographer based in New York. He was born in New Jersey in 1983, raised in California, studied mathematics in college, and holds a masters degree in journalism from the University of Missouri. His personal work is driven by an interest in identity–be it an individual or collective identity–and how it interrelates to a given geography. He primarily works in medium and large formats. His work has been published by Time Magazine, MSNBC, The Wall Street Journal, Smithsonian Magazine, CNN, Der Greif, Anthropology Now, The Columbia Missourian, LA Record, LA Weekly, and Narratively, among others, and is held in the permanent collection at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History.


Chan Hong Yui Clement |  http://www.holditorloseit.com/

Hong Kong is situated on a hilly and mountainous terrain. Because of the lack of natural flat land, Hong Kong simply does not have the prerequisite to be designed into a grid system - a town planning method that is found in many other world cities such as New York. According to the Hong Kong Planning Department, about 47% of the land in Hong Kong lies above 100 mPD*. Almost half of Hong Kong therefore has to be built on uplands, resulting in what is commonly known as a multi-level urban design. Z-Axis aims at documenting the type of multi-level urban design that is shaped by the hilly and mountainous terrain in Hong Kong. Z-Axis, in mathematical terms, refers to the depth of an object in a three-dimensional coordinate system. Looking into the Hong Kong urban landscape along the Z-Axis, one can gain more understanding of (i) how the topographical factor impacts Hong Kong people’s habitation and (ii) to what extent the land has been altered in an attempt to adapt to the natural environment.              * mPD refers to metres above Principal Datum, i.e. 1.23m below the mean sea level in Hong Kong

Chan Hong Yui Clement (b. 1992, Hong Kong) considers his art practice as image-making. With a focus on the visual and conceptual qualities embedded with photography, Chan constantly reflects on his understandings and interpretations of the medium, which gradually become the foundation of a large part of his practice. Through various means of image- making, Chan intends to reveal both the limitations and potentials that are inherent to the photographic language, resulting in image-based works that tend to be medium-specific and process-driven. Graduated from Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) in 2015, Chan is currently working towards his Master of Fine Arts at the School of Creative Media, City University of Hong Kong. 


Deidre Huckabay | www.cacophonymag.com/deidre-huckabee

My work is rooted in a lifelong practice as a classical musician, but not in the sense that it is sonic, rhythmic, or otherwise musical. My musical life requires spending long hours alone and listening, and my work tends to reflect a solitary, interior world. This is not to say that my approach is personal or autobiographical. Instead, it seeks to submerge participants in a private, introspective, and imaginative world of their own making. Lately, my work has also integrated my experiences in psychoanalysis, in which free association is the central mechanism. Being a musician, I am naturally inclined to strengthen technique through deliberate repetition and playful exercise—and my recent work seeks to hone my mind’s ability to move with ease through associative pathways that lead always further inward. 

Deidre Huckabay is a Chicago-based performer, writer, photographer, and event producer. She is a flutist and has extensively toured the U.S., Europe, and Latin America. Deidre performs with the Eastman BroadBand and Manual Cinema, and has recorded for Urtext and Bridge Records. She is co-owner of the experimental cassette tape label Parlour Tapes+. Originally from west Texas, Deidre holds degrees from the Eastman School of Music and Duquesne University.


Honorable Mentions

John Lusis | www.johnlusisphoto.com

Cities Without Past responds to the rapid pace at which cities are beginning creating high rises and condos that are architecturally similar across the world and the churning of the built environment that is brought on in its wake. The rapid creation of new buildings is beginning to create cities in which the architecture is increasingly indistinguishable from one another this is because we are no longer building for human gain, but rather as expressions of wealth. To me this process creates an unsettling space, one where present seems unstable and the future seems to be built for someone else. I photograph this change in such a way as to make it seem simultaneously attractive, unsettling, and but fractured. By doing so, I hope viewers will evaluate the way buildings are constructed in cities and the destruction of existing architectures that comes with it.

John Lusis (b. 1987, Madison, WI) is a photographer based in Chicago, IL. He received his BFA from the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design in 2009 and MFA in photography from Columbia college Chicago in 2016. John’s practice focuses on the ways in which humans interface with buildings psychologically and economically. 


Rim Lee | www.rimlee.com

In the series Golden Time of MCC, the architecture of the Metropolitan Correctional Center looms over downtown Chicago. Enveloped in a warm orange glow, the lights function as surveillance. The geometry of the window confines the human figure. A man dressed in an orange jumpsuit is obscured by the thick glass and metal bars of an 11-feet-by-5-inch window. During the daytime, the narrow windows conceal the inmates from view, however during the nighttime, the prisoners become visible and the architecture reveals its function as a prison. Exploring the dynamic of the visible and invisible, the artist questions how architecture operates as power in built form. 

Rim Lee is currently an MFA candidate in the Painting and Drawing Department at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her work is in collections such as the Joan Flasch Artists’ Book Collection. She participated in group shows including Creature Comfort and To Listen. To Speak. To Act. She was awarded the Nancy Crouch Scholarship. Her artistic practice investigates space as an institutionalized demarcation of power. She questions architecture itself as a representation of visible and invisible state power. The analysis shifts between the physical structures itself and the concepts the structure manifests.