Tuesday, November 28 at 5:00 pm

Artist of the Month: Mark Chester

The Bay State: A Multicultural Landscape
Photographs of New Americans

Clemens Kalischer, Photographer, Germany

The Bay State: A Multicultural Landscape–Photographs of New Americans will be on view in the Library’s lobby gallery throughout the month of November. A reception with photographer Mark Chester will take place from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, November 28, 2017.

This exhibit of inspirational portraits, presented by nationally known professional photographer Mark Chester, offers a moving display of more than 400 newly naturalized U.S. citizens who hail from over 190 of the 196 countries and territories around the globe and are now residents of the Commonwealth.

Artist’s statement: “In youth my penchant to discover places and people began, National Geographic, my
guide; for 40 years with wanderlust and curiosity I covered the continents photographing cultural landscapes.  I’ve come full circle—traveling the world not leaving the state.  The Bay State: A Multicultural Landscape, supporting MIRA (Massachusetts Immigrant Refugee Advocacy Coalition) is a collection of informal, environmental portraits of ethnic diversity in Massachusetts.  400-plus photographs that represent over 180 countries are touring the state; a companion book for donation to schools and libraries will bring awareness to our cultural diversity: subjects of various stations, foreign-born, naturalized U.S. citizens residing in the Commonwealth.  Prompted by the 2010 Census, the seed was planted earlier on assignment at Ellis Island for a 1978 essay by mentor Charles Kuralt.  Unlike my candid street photography, this is a straightforward approach: individuals looking into the camera, telling stories through expression, place and pose.”

About the artist: Mark Chester has been a professional photographer since 1972. He was director of photography and staff photographer at the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, in New York City.  His photographs are in the permanent collections of the museums in Baltimore, Brooklyn, Cape Cod, Denver, Portland (Maine), San Francisco and Washington, DC, among other communities across the country.

Chester created, produced and photographed the book, No In America (Taylor, 1986), a tongue-in-cheek collection of photographs of “No” signs.  Previously, he photographed Charles Kuralt’s book, Dateline America (Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1979). His most recent book, the award-winning Twosomes (Un-Gyve Press), was released in 2011, and the touring exhibits of photographs from the book continue to travel the globe.

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