Foregrounding the materiality of photography in a digital age, Sheree Hovsepian works with film-based cameras, light-sensitive paper, various objects, and her own body to produce cerebral and sensual photographs in which she deconstructs her medium. She produces all her photographs in the studio and darkroom using traditional printing techniques. Confounding and subtle, her work reflects her deep knowledge of the history and theory of photography. In her “Haptic Wonders” series, for example, she emphasizes the physicality of her medium—dependent upon the presence of the photographer and the subject—through a group of photograms. To make these camera-less images, Hovsepian directly exposes light-sensitive paper, partially covered with cut pieces of construction paper or marked with the traces of her fingers. As with all her work, the resulting images suggest that even the most documentary photograph is a mediated creation.
Hovsepian (b.1974, Isfahan, Iran) earned her MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2002, a dual BFA/BA from the University of Toledo in 1999, and studied at the Glasgow School of Art, Scotland in 1998. In 2022, Hovsepian was included in the international exhibition at the 59th Venice Biennale with a room dedicated to her work. Other recent solo or two-person exhibitions include Halsey McKay Gallery, East Hampton (2020); High Pictures Gallery, New York (2019); Team Bungalow, Los Angeles, CA (2019); and moniquemeloche, Chicago, IL (2018). Recent group exhibitions include Lubeznik Center for the Arts, Michigan City, IN (2022); Rachel Uffner Gallery, New York, NY (2022); Parrish Art Museum, Water Mill, NY (2021); Half Gallery, New York, NY (2020); Hauser & Wirth, Southampton, NY (2019); CHART Gallery, New York, NY (2019); Stony Island Arts Bank, Chicago, IL (2017 & 2018); The Drawing Center, New York, NY (2017).
Hovsepian’s work is in the permanent collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, IL; the Bronx Museum, NY; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, NY; and the Studio Museum in Harlem, NY; The Spertus Museum, Chicago, IL, and the Zabludowicz Collection, London, UK. Hovsepian received grants from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2000 and 2002. Residencies include Open Sessions Residency at the Drawing Center, New York, NY (2016); The Banff Centre, Banff, Alberta, CA (2015); and Centre for Contemporary Photography, Toronto, ON (2014). She currently lives and works in New York, NY.