Foregrounding the materiality of photography in a digital age, 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 of 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 of her work, the resulting images suggest that even the most documentary photograph is a mediated creation.
Sheree Hovsepian (American b. 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. Recent solo and two-person exhibitions have been organized by Halsey McKay Gallery, East Hampton (2020); Higher Pictures Gallery, New York (2019); Team Bungalow, Los Angeles, with Paul Mpagi Sepuya, (2019) and Monique Meloche Gallery, Chicago (2018). Recent group exhibitions include Affinities for Abstraction: Women Artists on Eastern Long Island, 1950-2020, Parrish Art Museum, Southampton, NY; There’s There There, Hauser & Wirth, Southampton, NY; Arches and Ink, Rachel Uffner Gallery, New York; Inertial Dynamics, Half Gallery, New York; Seductive Reduction, CHART Gallery, New York; Material Gestures, Stony Island Arts Bank, Chicago; and Where Do We Stand?, The Drawing Center, New York. In 2022, Hovsepian will be included in the international exhibition at the 59th Venice Biennale with a room dedicated to her work. Her work is in the permanent collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, the Bronx Museum, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, and the Studio Museum in Harlem, among others.