Americans Looking In

McDonalds, Ashok Sinha (2014)

On view at the Center for Book Arts Main Gallery October 9 through December 12, 2020.
Reserve your visit here. RSVP for the opening reception here.

The Americans, by Robert Frank, was a highly influential book in post-war American photography. The photographs were notable for their distanced view of both high and low strata of American society and the book as a whole created a complicated portrait of the period, interpreted as skeptical of contemporary values and evocative of ubiquitous loneliness. 

Both curators of this exhibition have reflected on what it means to be “American.” Having multicultural backgrounds and being raised in the States has given them both moments of confusion and frustration, and has led them to wonder what this country has to do with personal identity. When forming this exhibition, the curators presented themselves, artists, editors, leaders and everyday-people with the question – “What is American culture today, and what does an American look like?”

They ask the viewer to consider the question with them starting through the eyes of the artists in this exhibition, leading to self reflection upon exiting the space.

Artists Include:
Thomas Allen
Uriel Cidor
Ana Paula Cordeiro
Daniela Deeg + Cynthia Lollis
Ke Francis
Jon Feinstein
Kris Graves Projects featuring Nadiya Nacorda, Kenneth Wrye and MaryLynne Wrye, Alina van Ryzin, Kiliii Yüyan, Courtney Asztalos & Michael W. Hicks, Tess Roby, Jed Devine, Hayley Austin
Iris Grimm
Amos Kennedy
Paul Kessel
Shane Lavalette
Jamie Martinez
Greg Miller
Tammy Nguyen
Iviva Olenick
Eric Pickersgill
Purgatory Pie Press
Religious Leaders
E. Brady Robinson
Arlene Rush
Anastasia Samoylova
Ashok Sinha
Brian Taylor
treat america project featuring Paul Sisson, Bubblegum & Whiskey, Lisa Toto, Jym Davis, Ingrid V. Wells

Public Programs:
Oct 21, 6:30pm: Curator Talk with Emilie Ahern & Sherri Littlefield
Nov 4, 6:30pm: Book v. Exhibition: What’s the best path for artists?
Nov 19, 6:30pm: Artist Q&A + Virtual Potluck

Curated by Emilie Ahern and Sherri Littlefield

Support for the Center for Book Arts’ Visual Arts Program is provided, in part, by the New York State Council on the Arts, with the support of Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, and by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.