Expanding the Walls Reclaiming Beautiful
Jul 20, 2005 - Oct 23, 2005
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  • Bianca Hamilton
    Wiggin, Out, 2005
    Courtesy the artist

  • Olajuwon Phillips
    Untitled, 2005
    Courtesy the artist

  • Mbali Ndolvu
    Sibi, 2005
    Courtesy the artist

  • Yanely Espinal
    A Light, 2005
    Courtesy the artist

The Studio Museum in Harlem presents Reclaiming Beautiful, the culminating exhibition by Expanding the Walls, an intergenerational program in which youth explore the notion of community using photography. Organized by the participants, Reclaiming Beautiful investigates the concept of beauty by presenting images that celebrate the unusual, document neighborhoods and challenge ideals of beauty.

“We hope to expand the idea of what beauty means,” says Danny Alba, Expanding the Walls participant. “All of our lives we have been told what beautiful is and now it’s our turn to change that.”

Presented alongside James VanDerZee’s iconic images of Harlem, this exhibition investigates new notions of beauty through documentation of Harlem’s current transformation, examination of family traditions, and by challenging existing conventions of beauty.

“This exhibition brings the students’ conversations about photography into the Museum space,” says Ronny Quevedo, Expanding the Walls Coordinator. “The images in Reclaiming Beautiful present the teenagers’ new awareness about how perception can be altered to redefine how they think about beauty.”

Danny Alba, Fashion Industries High School
Jesseca Chery, High School for Envioronmental Studies
Cristen Corprew, Frederick Douglas Academy
Yanely Espinal, Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School
Bianca Hamilton, Brooklyn High School of Arts
Galina Mukomolova, Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School
Mbali Ndlovu, The Brearley School
Olajuwon Phillips, A. Phillip Randolph High School
Fatima Quiroz, DeWitt Clinton High School
Jessica Spaulding, The Beacon School
Sabrina Whyte, Brooklyn High School of Arts
Maxine Wong, Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School