Exhibited Works

Peters Projects of Santa Fe is proud to announce Will Wilson: Photosynthesis, an exhibition of photography from Wilson’s critical Indigenous Photographic Exchange series opening Friday, August 17th, 5 to 7pm.

As Wilson explains; “I propose to create a body of photographic inquiry that will stimulate a critical dialogue and reflection around the historical and contemporary “photographic exchange” as it pertains to Native Americans. My aim is to convene with and invite indigenous artists, arts professionals, and tribal governance to engage in the performative ritual that is the studio portrait. This experience has been intensified and refined by the use of large format (8x10) wet plate collodion studio photography. This beautifully alchemic photographic process dramatically contributed to our collective understanding of Native American people and, in so doing, our American identity.”

These large format images hold every detail of their process and exposure of the original tintypes. Wilson has embedded the digital app Layar in these images allowing them to essentially “come to life” and explain their individual Indigenous histories. Wilson continues; “Ultimately, I want to ensure that the subjects of my photographs are participating in the re-inscription of their customs and values in a way that will lead to a more equal distribution of power and influence in the cultural conversation. It is my hope that these Native American photographs will represent an intervention within the contentious and competing visual languages that form today’s photographic canon. This critical indigenous photographic exchange will generate new forms of authority and autonomy. These alone—rather than the old paradigm of assimilation--can form the basis for a re-imagined vision of who we are as Native people.”

Wilson is a Diné photographer who spent his formative years living in the Navajo Nation. Born in San Francisco, Wilson studied photography at the University of New Mexico, 2002 and Oberlin College, 1993. In 2007, Wilson won the Native American Fine Art Fellowship from the Eiteljorg Museum, and in 2010 was awarded a prestigious grant from the Joan Mitchell Foundation.  From 2009 to 2011, Wilson managed the National Vision Project, a Ford Foundation funded initiative at the Museum of Contemporary Native Arts in Santa Fe, and helped coordinate the New Mexico Arts Temporary Installations Made for the Environment (TIME) program on the Navajo Nation. Wilson is part of the Science and Arts Research Collaborative (SARC) which brings together artists interested in using science and technology in their practice with collaborators from Los Alamos National Laboratory and Sandia Labs as part of the International Symposium on Electronic Arts, 2012 (ISEA). Recently, Wilson completed an exhibition and artist residency at the Denver Art Museum and is currently the King Fellow artist in residence at the School of Advanced Research in Santa Fe, NM.

For more information, contact Mark Del Vecchio, Director, 505-954-5748 or mark@petersprojects.com