Allison Janae Hamilton
Allison Janae Hamilton is a visual artist working in photography, sculpture, installation, and taxidermy. Born in Kentucky, raised in Florida, Hamilton's artwork features uncanny scenes that blend the epic with the everyday and the disturbing with the delicate against the backdrop of the rural American south. Her works are pieced together from fairytales, family lore and overheard gossip, superstitions, sermons, archival family photographs, Baptist hymns, spirituals, memories, and passed down relics. The materials she uses—from metal to animal carcasses, found linens to furniture, red clay to antlers and claws—participate in her visioning of what the epic tale or great myth looks and feels like within both geographic and imagined southern landscapes. In this way, Hamilton's work draws from the literary modes of magical realism, southern gothic, and the carnivalesque in order to meditate on disruption and magic in the seemingly mundane routines and rituals of rural life.
Hamilton has exhibited at museums and institutions such as the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, Washington, DC, the Jewish Museum, New York, NY, the Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago, IL, the SilverEye Center for Photography, Pittsburgh, PA, the Museum of the African Diaspora, San Francisco, CA, and the Rush Arts Foundation, New York, NY. She was a 2013 Summer Artist-in-Residence at the School of Visual Arts, New York, NY and was the 2014 Summer Artist-in-Residence at Rush Arts Foundation in New York, NY. Hamilton was a 2013-2014 Fellow at the Whitney Independent Study Program, sponsored by the Whitney Museum of American Art. She was a finalist for the 2016 Outwin Boochever Portrait Prize, sponsored by the Smithsonian Institution. She received her PhD in American Studies at New York University and is a current MFA candidate in Visual Arts at Columbia University ('17). Hamilton's artwork has appeared in publications such as Transition Magazine, Women and Performance, Arte Al Limite, NKA: Journal of Contemporary African Art, and Artforum.
Courtesy of the Artist