“When you think of your insides, do you imagine a river or a volcano or … ?
What is pleasure without climax?
Can there be art without ego?”
In the opening essay of ‘Hindsight’, Yale School of Art’s 2020 MFA Photography graduate show which launched last week, writer and visual artist Carmen Winant poses a series of “Questions for Photographers”, serving the viewer a first taste of the existentialist menu this year’s batch of graduates has to offer. In times like these, when tangled, existential thoughts may come to us more often than not, the portfolio produced by the class of 2020’s newly acclaimed artists shines a light on a myriad of uncertainties, source of their creative quest for answers. Like most educational institutions across the globe, the Coronavirus pandemic has put a spanner in the works for Yale students, forcing this year’s MFA Photography alums to exhibit their graduating projects digitally for the first time in the Yale School of Art’s 150-year-old history, succumbing to one of this lifetime’s most absurd turn of events yet.
In a way, we got lucky –one of the world’s most fruitful art schools, having produced copious talents in the industry, from artist Awol Erizku, author of the ubiquitous portrait of a heavily pregnant and sanctified Beyoncé to Eva Hesse, a pioneer in the use of unconventional materials in sculpture, welcomes visitors beyond the state of Connecticut, allowing us all to virtually contemplate the accomplishments from the exclusive, prolific program. In fact, Yale’s distinguished Photography MFA only takes on a mere ten students per year, whom are given the tools to swimmingly conquer the competing world of photography on departure.
Hindsight plays an homage to the questions we formulate and attempt to unknot in the course of our lives, tackling themes spanning sexuality, mundanity, death to disability in a sexual context. It is through the art of photography that this year’s graduates examine the effect of questioning as an inkling to the realization of an answer, capturing our pursuit for validation through the medium of a lens. Visit the full online show here: http://mfaphoto.yaleschoolofart.org/