This program brings together seven artists in the 2019 Whitney Biennial who work with the medium and activity of photography. Following brief presentations, the artists discuss how and why they continue to use—and reinvent—photography today. They consider different approaches to the medium in light of the proliferation of photographic technologies, the digital and physical spaces in which photographs exist, and how artists make interventions within the field. Speakers include Lucas Blalock, John Edmonds, Todd Gray, Curran Hatleberg, Elle Pérez, Paul Mpagi Sepuya, and Heji Shin.
June 27, 2018
Todd Gray was Michael Jackson’s personal photographer for 10 years at the height of the singer’s fame in the 80s. Gray talks to Front Row’s John Wilson about the lengths the reclusive singer took to control his image – lessons in celebrity which he learned from none other than Katherine Hepburn and Jane Fonda.
Todd Gray’s work is included in Michael Jackson: On the Wall which runs until 21 October 2018 at the National Portrait Gallery in London.
Listen to the full interview here
Oct 7, 2016
For his exhibition A Place That Looks Like Home, artist Todd Gray re-frames and re-contextualizes images from his personal archive that spans over forty years of his career as a photographer, sculptor and performance artist. Gray describes himself as an artist and activist who primarily focuses on issues of race, class, gender and colonialism.
His unique process of combining and layering a variety of images and fragments of images allows him the opportunity to create his own history and “my own position in the diaspora.” Working with photographs of pop culture, documentary photographs of Ghana (where he keeps a studio), portraits of Michael Jackson, gang members from South Los Angeles and photo documentation from the Hubble telescope, Gray asserts what he refers to as his own polymorphous identity that defies definition. Inspired by the work of cultural theorist Stuart Hall, Gray invites the viewer to participate in an “ever-unfinished conversation about identity and history.”
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July 20, 2016
For one year, the artist Todd Gray wore the clothes of his friend and mentor the late Ray Manzarek, a founding member of the Doors. An act that went beyond artistic homage or memorial impulse, Gray’s gesture is being restaged for Made in L.A. 2016. In this program, Gray’s readings from letters he wrote to Manzarek’s widow about his desire to bring Ray “into the orbital sphere of the art world” will be followed by a discussion with Hamza Walker, co-curator of Made in L.A. 2016 and associate curator at the Renaissance Society.
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July 13, 2016
Caliban in the Mirror
Aug 29, 2010
Todd Gray and Max King Cap's excerpt of Caliban in the Mirror originally performed for Studio: Spring 2010, REDCAT