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Shelby Graham

Sesnon Staff
Director/Curator Sesnon Gallery

With an MFA in photography, Shelby Graham is the Director/Curator of the Sesnon Art Gallery at the University of California, Santa Cruz (UCSC). She has collaborated on projects with the Museum of Art and History in Santa Cruz, CA; the San Jose Museum of Art; Gallery Ef in Tokyo, Japan; galleries in Tenerife, Canary Islands; The Center for Photographic Art, in Carmel, CA; and the Craft & Folk Art Museum in Los Angeles, CA. Graham has been director of the Mary Porter Sesnon Art Gallery since 1999 and is on the planning committee for a new interdisciplinary Institute of the Arts and Sciences at UCSC. She has taught courses in photography, contemporary art and museum practices at the University of California, Santa Cruz; San Jose State University; Cabrillo College; and Seinan Gakuin University in Kyushu, Japan.   A selection of her curatorial works include: Unique Multiples, Teaching with the Parkett Collection, 2019, co-curated with Enrique Martinez Leal from the University of Castilla-La Mancha, Spain,  2019: A History of Mary Porter Sesnon and Pino Alto, 2018; The Gail Project, An Okinawan American Dialogue, 2017; Black is a Color: Raymond Saunders, 2015; Tom Franco: Co-Lab, 2015; Alternative Lineage, 2014; The Dinner Parties: art and agriculture; The Harrison Studio: On Mixing, Mapping and Territory, 2013; Katerina Lanfranco: Natural Selection, 2012, Lewis Watts: New Orleans Suite, 2012; Xiaoze Xie: Resistant Archeology, 2011; Some Assembly Required: race, gender and globalization, 2009–2010; Interruptions of Hierarchies, 2008; Image as Object,2006; Hank Willis Thomas: Signifying Blackness, 2006; The Rhetoric of the Pose: Rethinking Hannah Wilke, 2005; and Binh Danh, Immortality, The Remnants of the Vietnam and American War, 2002. See Sesnon Gallery past exhibitions page for more details.

Shelby Graham has a 30+year career as an educator and fine art photographer, including solo and group exhibitions in the United States from California to Philadelphia and international exhibitions in Japan, Spain, and the Czech Republic. Graham earned her MFA in photography from San Jose State University and specializes in alternative and experimental photography with innovative curatorial praxis. She is currently collaborating on What Makes Us Human: An Art + Genomics Convergence 2020-ongoing.

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