Rahshia Sawyer 2020

Rahshia Sawyer is a creative professional based in the Washington DC area.

 

She teaches undergraduate and graduate students the nuances of photography at George Mason University.  The Head of Privacy and Data Ethics Design at Capital Onee, she focuses on the intersection of humanity and data privacy. As an internationally recognized photographer, she is active in the art world, presenting her work on resilience, where she examines the balanced (or imbalanced) relationship between beauty and chaos.

Statement

Beauty anchors us to our humanity; it acts as the balance between reality and fantasy. Our experience of the world is not static; it is a compilation of layers. Maturing over time, we add layers upon layers, becoming ridged but never finite. An inquiry into the existential questions of our reality, identity, and beliefs lead us to examine layers of significant transition. When we passed from the known to the unknown, this time is described by many as a sensation of floating, being disconnected from their reality.

My work contrasts this Daedalian journey with figurative photographs, the subject disconnected from the ground signifying their transforming reality. Each composition is selected to be neutral, that sliver of space between positive and negative. Allowing the works abstract quality to be informed by the viewer, recreating a singular struggle with our emotions — an experience we all share.

Bio

Rahshia Sawyer is a conceptual photographer based in the Washington DC area. She was the 2012 recipient of the Contemporary Talents award from France’s François Schneider Foundation. Exhibited in the 2012 Inaugural Dublin Biennial, her photographs and installations have been included in numerous group shows in Canada, England, France, Ireland, Spain, and the United States. Her work is in the Corcoran Gallery of Art's permanent collections, Foundation François Schneider, and Radford University Museum. 

More recently, she received the 2020 Honorable Mention from the International Photography Awards. She received her MFA from George Mason University in Virginia and her BFA at the Corcoran College of Art & Design in Washington DC. Her current projects examine the balanced (or imbalanced) relationship between beauty and chaos.

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Curriculum Vitae

SOLO EXHIBITIONS

 

2018     Invisible Listeners: Signature Gallery Greater Reston Arts Center, Reston, VA
2017     Within the im/balance, The Center for the Arts of Greater Manassas & Prince William County, VA
2017     Some Things I Can’t Explain, ArtSpace Herndon, Herndon, VA
2016     Some Things I Can’t Explain, Craddock-Terry Gallery, Lynchburg, VA
2014     Then you weren’t, Workhouse Art Center, Lorton VA
2014     Some Things I Can’t Explain, MFA Thesis Show, George Mason University (catalog)
2013     Subversion, Greenbelt Community Art Center, Greenbelt MD

2018     EMERGE: Center Gallery, Wichita, KA
2018     ASPIRE, Manifest Gallery, Cincinnati, OH (catalog)

2016     Berlin Foto Biennale 2016: Palazzo Italia, Berlin

2014     Contemporary Talent 2012, François Schneider Foundation, Wattwiller France
2014     Dealing with Trauma through Art Making, Holy Family University, Philadelphia, PA
2014     Positive ID: Bodies & Subjectivities in Photography: NOVA-Woodbridge, Woodbridge, VA
2014     Artifex: GMU Graduate Student Exhibit: Capital One Corp. Art Program, Richmond, VA
2014     2nd Annual GMU MFA Exhibit: GMU School of Art, VA (catalog)

2013     Hickok Cole: WPA, Washington, DC
2013     Common Pulse Festival: Intersecting Abilities, Durham Art Gallery, Ontario Canada
2013     ACADEMY 2013: Annual MFA / BFA Invitational, CONNORSMITH, Washington DC
2013     EMERGE: Center Gallery, Wichita, KA
2013     Humans Being II: Woman Made Gallery, Chicago, IL (catalog)
2013     Body and Brain: Woman Made Gallery, Chicago, IL (catalog)
2013     1st Annual GMU MFA Exhibit: GMU School of Art, VA (catalog)

2012     Artomatic 2012, Crystal City, VA
2012     The Surrealist Influence on Contemporary Photography, Austin, TX
2012     Hickok Cole: WPA, Washington, DC

2011      Graduate Student Exhibition: GMU School of Art, VA

2004    All Senior Show: Corcoran College of Art and Design, DC
2004    Thesis Exhibition: Corcoran College of Art and Design, DC
2004    Black Milk: Marvelli Gallery, NYC
2004    Artomatic 2004, Washington DC

2016     The Mary B. Howard Artist Member Exhibition: Greater Reston Arts Center, Reston, VA

2015     Jax Exhibition: Jacksonville Center for the Arts. Floyd, VA
2015     Fresh! | Young Collectors Show: JanKossen Contemporary, New York, NY
2015     Art Educators’ Exhibition: In Practice: Greater Reston Arts Center, Reston, VA
2015     EMULSION 2015: Gallery OonH, Washington DC
2015     Voices: An Artist’s Perspective: National Association of Women Artists, NYC (catalog)

2014     Post-Photography: Beyond the Print: Target Gallery, Torpedo Factory, Alexandria VA
2014     WATERGIRL, Artzibs Gallery, Athens, OH
2014     8th annual MASTERPIECES: Manifest Gallery, Cincinnati, OH (catalog)
2014     Of Memory, Bone and Myth V, Rourke Art Museum, Moorhead, MN
2014     PhotoSpiva, Spiva Center for the Arts, Joplin, MO
2014     Significant Details, Verizon Gallery, Annandale VA
2014     Take Flight, The Kiernan Gallery, Lexington, VA (catalog)
2014     2nd Annual MFA/MA Juried Show, Nelson Gallery, Lexington, VA

2013     CHOICE, Northern California Women’s Caucus for Art, San Francisco, CA
2013     Westmaryginiasylvanington: Regional Juried Exhibition, Frederick, MD
2013     7th annual MASTERPIECES: Manifest Gallery, Cincinnati, OH (catalog)
2013     PHOTO/VIDEO 13: Juried Mid-Atlantic Exhibition: Artisphere, Arlington, VA
2013     San Francisco Int’l Photo Exhibition: Gallery Photographica, San Francisco, CA (catalog)
2013     Open Water!: The Kiernan Gallery, Lexington, VA (catalog)
2013     Mysterious Visions: Dreams, Fantasies & Mirages: PhotoPlace Gallery, Middlebury, VT
2013     Fine Art Photography Competition 2013: ArtSpace Herndon, Herndon, VA
2013     8th Photographic Image Biennial Exhibition: Wellington B. Gray Gallery, Greenville, NC (catalog)

2012     The National Juried Photography Exhibit: The Delaplaine, Frederick, MD
2012     International Juried Photography Exhibition 2012: 12 12 Gallery, Richmond, VA
2012     Bombay Sapphire Artisan Series: International Visions Gallery, Washington, DC
2012     Still Life: The Art of Arrangement: The Kiernan Gallery, Lexington, VA (catalog)
2012     Love, Hate & Everything In Between: StoneCrop Gallery, Ogunquit, ME
2012     The Art of Photography Show 2012, San Diego, CA, (catalog)
2012     5th annual Cork Street Open Exhibition, London, England (catalog)
2012     6th annual MASTERPIECES: Manifest Gallery, Cincinnati, OH (catalog)
2012     Inaugural Dublin Biennial, Dublin, Ireland (catalog)
2012     Art Comes Alive, Cincinnati, OH (catalog)
2012     1st Annual Radford University Photography Exhibition, Radford, VA
2012     Imagination: A Smith Gallery, Austin, TX

2011     Distilled, Abstract Art: Lana Santorelli Gallery, NJ

Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington DC
François Schneider Foundation
Radford University Museum, Radford VA

2020    Honorable Mention, International Photography Awards (IPA)

 

2017     Honorable Mention, International Photography Awards (IPA)

 

2016     Honorable Mention, International Photography Awards (IPA)
2016     Honorable Mention, Prix de la Photographie (Px3)

 

2015     Finalist, 8th edition of the Julia Margaret Cameron Award
2015     Honorable Mention, Jax Exhibition
2015     Honorable Mention, Fine Art Photography Awards (FAPA)
2015     Semi-Finalist, The Trawick Prize: Bethesda Contemporary Art Awards
2015     2nd Place, EMULSION 2015

 

2014     Honorable Mention, International Photography Awards (IPA)
2014     Honorable Mention, Prix de la Photographie (Px3)
2014     Best in Show, WATERGIRL, Artzibs Gallery
2014     Academic and Artistic Excellence, George Mason University

 

2013     Grand Prix Juror Award of Merit, International Fine Art Photography Competition
2013     Contemporary Talent 2012, Photography Category, François Schneider Foundation
2013     Gold Medal Award San Francisco International Photography Exhibition
2013     2nd Place, Fine Art Photography Competition 2013
2013     Juror’s Choice Award, Open Water!
2013     Leadership Award, ODIME 2013 Vision Awards
2013     EMERGE Fellowship Award, 2013 Midwest Photo Emerge

 

2012     First Place, 1st Annual Radford Photography Exhibition
2012     Purchase Award, Art Comes Alive

2014    International Photography Annual 2, Exhibition in Print, Manifest Gallery
2013    So to Speak, A Feminist Journal of Language and Art, Spring

2014 – 2021     Adjunct Professor: George Mason University, Fairfax, VA

2018                 Juror: 2018 Fine Art Photography Exhibition, ArtSpace, Herndon, VA
2017                  Professional Development Workshop, ArtSpace, Herndon, VA
2016 – 2019     Visual Arts Committee Member, ArtSpace, Herndon, VA
2016                 Juror: 2016 Fine Art Photography Exhibition, ArtSpace, Herndon, VA
2015 – 2016     Auction Coordinator: WPA
2015                 Artist Talk: Wesleyan Art Department, Buckhannon WV
2015                 Juror: 2015 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, Fairfax, VA
2012 – 2014     Graduate Lecture: George Mason University, Fairfax, VA

2014      Organizer, 2nd Annual GMU MFA Exhibition
2013      Organizer, Open Studios SOA MFA: Graduate Artifex
2013      Organizer, 1st Annual GMU MFA Exhibition
2012      Organizer, 1st For/By Student Exhibition
2013 – 2014       President, SOA MFA: Graduate Artifex
2012 – 2013       Founder & President, SOA MFA: Graduate Artifex

2014     MFA Art and Visual Technology School of Art George Mason University, Fairfax, VA
2004    BFA Photography Corcoran College of Art + Design Washington DC
1996     AA Humanities, Foreign Languages College of the Redwoods Eureka, CA

Selected Press

Rahshia Sawyer's fine art photographs have been exhibited throughout the U.S. and internationally.

EMULSION

EMULSION 2015 Winners 

March 2015

Winner 2012 Talents Contemporaries

 

François Schneider Foundation Permanent Collection


May 2012

Daily Campello Art News

 

Laura Roulet’s AOM Report


June 2012

New York Times

 

Review: Black Milk, Theories of Suicide

July 2004