Akron, Ohio, US
|Education||2004, MFA, Mason Gross School of Art, Rutgers University|
|Known for||Photography, Video Art|
|Awards||2006, Emerging Artist Award from the Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art, Ridgefield, Connecticut, US|
Azzarella's work reflects on pivotal moments in history such as the torture of Iraqi POWs in Abu Ghraib and the protest of a single man in Tienanmen Square against a column of tanks.Azzarella reworks these canonical images to omit the tragic, negative, or most disturbing aspect of these images. For example, a photograph of a smiling Lynndie England pointing to a prisoner forced to masturbate is altered to only contain the smiling soldier. His photographs muddy the waters between the artificial beauty of a cinematic set and the inherent beauty of the natural landscape. Absent their most significant events, Azzarella’s images raise questions about how our society constructs a narrative of our collective history.
In 2011 Azzarella released Untitled #125 (Hickory), one of the longest running experimental films at 120 hours. Untitled #125 (Hickory) is an art work created between 2009-2011. The work is based upon the 6 minute and 30 second section in the film The Wizard of Oz, from the moment the viewer sees the tornado until Dorothy meets Glinda the Good Witch. This work extends a moment of transformative transition (Dorothy's journey to Oz) to envelop what the artist believes is the entire time of her experience.
The parenthetical reference refers to a deleted scene from the film where the farmhand, Hickory, is working on a machine to ward off tornados.
- FOX News.com - New York Museum Cancels Terror Exhibition After Controversy 
- The Brooklyn Rail - Josh Azzarella and Fresh Kills 
- The New Yorker - Short List 
- Interview with the Artist