Wing Young Huie spent a full week with South Ridge School 7-12th grade art students learning to identify and discuss implicit bias through photography. Below see Chalk Talk images.
How Do Photographs Form Us?
Wing’s dynamic slide show lecture confronts many divisive social issues, such as cultural bias, immigration, religion, and social disconnection. While sharing anecdotes and insights into his creative process—and his abilities to intimately interact with thousands of strangers—he also discusses the personal and professional challenges in his 35-year journey of becoming a accomplished artist.
What Do You See? Through a Zine published by Mr. Huie, students participate in a discussion of their impressions, bias and ideas concerning what they see in the photograph image. These discussion are able to be translated into real life interactions between stranger, friends and family.
A “Chalk Talk” workshop is where participants engage each other with by asking a series of open-ended questions. Working in pairs each student then chooses only one of the answers from each person, which that person writes on a chalkboard. How would you answer these questions?
What are you?
How do you think others see you? What don’t they see?
What advice would you give to a stranger?
What is your favorite word?
Describe an incident that changed you.
How have you been affected by race?
Workshop participants pair with someone in the room they are unfamiliar with, ask each other these questions, choose each others’ answer, and and then write that answer down on black construction paper with white chalk. (Option: participants can then photograph each other with their chalkboards.) This intimate and non-confrontational interaction addresses issues of bias, challenging preconceptions of the other and one’s self.
Contrasting points of views are engaged when Wing presents his photographs that are open to interpretation and asks participants, “What do you see?” He then facilitates a dialogue before revealing the stories behind the photographs that furthers the complexities of cultural and personal perceptions, creating a challenging yet safe environment for deep discussion.
How are we impacted by the daily consumption of countless images created by marketing forces, the media, and popular entertainment? How can we differentiate our authentic selves from idealized realities? Do we become what we see? In other words: How do photographs form us?
Shifting Identities How do you present yourself in different setting? with different people?
Culture What is your culture? What makes your life unique to your family, land, community?
McKnight Names Wing Young Huie as Distinguished Artist 2018 “With his powerful photography and compelling public art projects, Wing Young Huie has been documenting Minnesota’s changing cultural landscape for more than 30 years in images that ask us to focus on people and places that are often overlooked,” says Kate Wolford, president of McKnight. “Whether he’s talking to a class of college students or turning entire city blocks into a public gallery space, Wing has a rare gift for challenging assumptions and inviting conversation through his unique artistic vision. We couldn’t be more delighted by the selection committee’s decision to honor a photographer who really has transformed our image of what being Minnesotan means.”
This opportunity made possible through the generous donations of the Northland Foundations and Teaching Tolerance/Southern Poverty Law. Check out Teaching Tolerance website for more information