Carrie Mae Weems is the 2017 recipient of the Edward Hopper Citation of Merit for Visual Artists, presented by Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Council on the Arts in recognition of her significant artistic contributions to the state of New York.
For this series of photographs, Carrie Mae Weems documented the changing landscape and culture of Beacon, NY, over the course of her year as artist-in-residence there in 2002. Weems places herself as the subject in the Beacon photographs, always pictured standing with her back to the camera, observing and “bearing witness, confronting something, [serving] as a guide to the viewer standing with me.”
Considered one of the most influential contemporary American artists, Weems is celebrated for her photography, films, and videos that address social themes focusing on race, gender, and class. She has exhibited at major institutions throughout the world, and she is the recipient of numerous awards and fellowships, including the MacArthur “Genius” grant, the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s Lifetime Achievement Award, the Prix de Roma, and many more. She lives and works in Syracuse, NY.
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website