In July, Washington D.C.-born, Brooklyn-based photographer John Edmonds was awarded the inaugural UOVO Prize, designed for an emerging Brooklyn artist. The Prize, a joint venture between UOVO, a fine art storage company, and the Brooklyn Museum, is a celebration of the borough’s most talented creatives and the Brooklyn culture that informs their work.
“We’re so pleased to offer the UOVO Prize to John Edmonds, an artist whose gorgeous photographs negotiating the intersection of race, gender, sexuality, and spirituality have been captivating us over the past several years,” said Anne Pasternak, Shelby White, and Leon Levy, Director Brooklyn Museum.
As the recipient of this Prize, Edmonds will receive a $25,000 cash grant, a 50×50-foot art installation on the wall of UOVO’s Bushwick location, and a solo exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum in 2020—Edmonds’ first.
“I’ve been talking closely with many of the museum curators whom I am working with on the exhibition,” said Edmonds. “We are in the beginning stages, but the folks at the museums are not just curators and colleagues, but also friends. I’m building on many conversations I’ve had with them all.”
The photographer’s large scale public art piece will be revealed this fall; this debut will also mark the opening of UOVO:BROOKLYN, the company’s forthcoming Bushwick outpost.
Edmonds’ photography centers on portraits (of young Black men, in particular) and rich still lifes. The artist, who explores Black history, fashion, and queer desire, says that winning the Prize is “an opportunity to expand and radicalize my practice.”
Edmonds has selected the photograph that will soon be plastered on the UOVO facade in Bushwick, and is excited to see how the community responds to it. As Edmonds said, “It’s something I have had in the back of my mind for some time.”
Cover photo courtesy of John Edmonds.
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