Zoe Strauss

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Zoe Strauss
Born 1970
Philadelphia, USA
Nationality American
Known for Photography

Zoe Strauss (born 1970) is an American photographer.


Strauss was born in 1970 in Philadelphia. Her father died when she was 5. She was the first member of her immediate family to graduate from high school. For her 30th birthday she was given a camera and started photographing in the city’s marginal neighborhoods.[citation needed] She is a photo-based installation artist who uses Philadelphia as a primary setting and subject for her work. Strauss typically photographs overlooked (or purposefully avoided) details[citation needed] with a humanist perspective and eye for composure.[1]

In 1995, she started the Philadelphia Public Art Project, a one-woman organization whose mission is to give the citizens of Philadelphia access to art in their everyday lives. Strauss calls the Project an “epic narrative” of her own neighborhood. “When I started shooting, it was as if somewhere hidden in my head I had been waiting for this,” she has said.[citation needed]

Between 2001 and 2011, Strauss’s photographic work culminated in a yearly “Under I-95” show which took place beneath the Interstate in South Philadelphia. She displayed her photographs on concrete pillars under the highway and sold them for $5 each.[citation needed]

Strauss received a Seedling Award from the Leeway Foundation in 2002, a Pew Fellowship in 2005, and in 2006 her work was included in the Whitney Biennial; she also mounted a solo exhibition[2] at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia. In 2007 Strauss was named a 2007 USA Gund Fellow and granted $50,000 by United States Artists.[citation needed]

Strauss frequently photographs near her grandparents' former home at 16th and Susquehanna.[3] Her photographs include shuttered buildings, empty parking lots and vacant meeting halls in South Philadelphia. Strauss says her work is “a narrative about the beauty and difficulty of everyday life."[4]

Her book America was published in 2008 by AMMO Books.[5]

In July 2012 Strauss was nominated for membership of the Magnum Photos agency.[citation needed]

Grants and awards[edit]

Solo exhibitions[edit]

  • 2002-2009 Works-in-Progress exhibit, Southwark Community Center, last week of October annually, Philadelphia, PA.[citation needed]
  • 2001-2010 Under 95 exhibit, Front St. and Mifflin St., the 1st weekend of May annually, Philadelphia, PA.[citation needed]
  • 2006 Projected and Selected Images, Acuna-Hansen Gallery, Los Angeles, CA.[citation needed]
  • 2006 Ramp Project, Philadelphia Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, PA.[8][dead link]
  • 2007 I-95 Works in Progress, Etc. Galerie, Prague, Czech Republic.[citation needed]
  • 2007 If You Reading This, Silverstein Photography, New York, NY.[9]
  • 2008 Zoe Strauss: Works in Progress, Peeler Art Center, Depauw University, Greencastle, IN.[10]
  • 2009 America: We Love Having You Here, Bruce Silverstein Gallery, New York, NY.[11]
  • 2010 Photographs by Zoe Strauss, Under I-95, Philadelphia, PA.[12]
  • 2010 Zoe Strauss: Works for Columbus, OH, Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, OH.[13]
  • 2012 Zoe Strauss: 10 Years, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, PA.[14]
  • 2012 Zoe Strauss: I-95: A Slideshow, Bruce Silverstein Gallery, New York, NY.[15]

Group exhibitions[edit]




  1. ^ Smith, Roberta (2012-07-12), "Art In Review Zoe Strauss: ‘10 Years, a Slideshow’". New York Times, The (NY)
  2. ^ "Ramp Project: Zoe Strauss"
  3. ^ Heller, Karen (2006-02-15), Page A01, “Suddenly, Her Images Clicked”. Philadelphia Inquirer, The (PA)
  4. ^ Sozanski, Edward J (2004-04-30), Page W25, "Taking Images of the streets back to their birthplace. Catch it While you can: Photos Alfresco Returns". Philadelphia Inquirer, The (PA)
  5. ^ http://www.ammobooks.com/new/books/america/
  6. ^ http://www.leeway.org/grantees.php?s1=year&s2=2002&ID=107
  7. ^ http://www.pewarts.org/2005/strauss/index.html
  8. ^ http://www.icaphila.org/exhibitions/past/strauss.php
  9. ^ http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_KiKDykb0sFg/Rt7zFieUONI/AAAAAAAAAi4/kiMrGjIPt1M/s1600-h/art+forum+full+review+web.jpg
  10. ^ http://www.depauw.edu/news/index.asp?id=21081
  11. ^ http://www.thefader.com/2008/11/21/fader-tv-photographer-zoe-strauss-knows-a-bunch-of-weirdos/
  12. ^ http://www.phrequency.com/blog/Zoe_Strauss_last_dance_under_I-95.html
  13. ^ http://www.wexarts.org/ex/index.php?eventid=4793
  14. ^ http://www.philamuseum.org/exhibitions/745.html
  15. ^ http://www.brucesilverstein.com/artist/276/
  16. ^ http://gargoyle.arcadia.edu/gallery/archives/worksonpaper2004.htm
  17. ^ http://whitney.org/www/2006biennial/artists.php?artist=Strauss_Zoe
  18. ^ http://citypaper.net/articles/2006-07-13/arts_agenda_museums.shtml?print=1
  19. ^ http://wonderlandonline.dk/media/was.pdf
  20. ^ http://chicago.timeout.com/events/events/312365/4233660/artist-talk
  21. ^ http://www.list.co.uk/event/20099312-molly-landreth-and-zoe-strauss-queer-brighton/

External links[edit]