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CalArts Alumna, Carrie Mae Weems, to receive "genius grant"

October 23, 2013
Mercury News

By Sheryl Nonnenberg

The enduring genius of Carrie Mae Weems

Photographer Carrie Mae Weems was recently chosen to receive a MacArthur Fellowship, colloquially known as MacArthur "genius grants." The highly coveted prize, given annually to around 30 individuals, is not a reward for past accomplishments, but rather a recognition of "exceptional merit and promise for continued and enhanced creative work."

Bay Area residents have the opportunity to see a comprehensive overview of the work of this renowned artist, thanks to a traveling exhibition presented by the Cantor Arts Center at Stanford University. "Carrie Mae Weems: Three Decades of Photography and Video," opened Oct. 16 and is to be on view until Jan. 5.

Viewing the 100 works presented in this 30-year retrospective, it is easy to see why Weems was selected for the MacArthur Fellowship. From the inception of her career, she has managed to weave a strong sense of narrative through a variety of photographic styles, from portraiture to landscape to staged tableaux. In each series, a compelling message about race, gender and class is presented, for the most part, in a straight-forward manner utilizing black and white gelatin prints. Weems has also experimented with performance art and several of her videos are on view. Read More

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