Description of Work
Donita Simpson is a Detroit based photographer who creates images of Detroit area artists, many who have exhibited at NCRC, in their personal creative environments. She earned her BFA, MFA and MEd from Wayne State University.
Simpson's portraits have hung in the Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery, traveled the nation and won several Statewide competitions. Her portrait of Detroit's beloved Gilda Snowden was chosen as a finalist in The Outwin 2016 American Portraiture Today Competition, selected from over 2500 entries. She has been photographing Detroit artists since the 1990s. Today, Simpson focuses her attention on the artists that have worked and produced art in Detroit for two decades or more.
Simpson's exhibit: Context is Everything, is a photographic endeavor about identity and what makes up the character of an artist. The photographs are an inquiry into what artists have in common with each other and with the city they inhabit. Do artists contribute to the identity of the community?
Simpson is interested in how artists influence each other and how they communicate with the audience. Each depiction brings the audience a bit closer to the art community, their work and the personal environments in which they live and create. It's her hope that through this investigation, the community of Detroit, as well as its community of artists, is nourished, encouraged and enabled by a glimpse of the spirit that feeds the passion that serves to build and strengthen the city.