Jul 29th 2023

Rachel Woolf: Deported: A Family Divided

@ Pueblo Unido Gallery

6216 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60660

Opening Saturday, July 29th, from 12PM - 4PM

On view through Saturday, September 23rd

ART WORKS Projects and Pueblo Unido Gallery are honored to present Deported: An American Division / A Family Divided. This exhibition presents work from an ongoing project by Colorado-based photographer Rachel Woolf on her time with Lourdes Salazar Bautista and her family as they navigate the U.S. federal immigration system and the joys and sorrows of life between the United States and Mexico.

After residing in Michigan with her U.S. born children Bryan, Lourdes ‘Lulys’, and Pamela for 20 years, Lourdes Salazar Bautista was deported in 2017 and joined her husband Luis in Mexico, while her children found their lives and education split between the two countries. Woolf’s photographs and documentation in both the U.S. and Mexico capture the personal realities of a family separated by borders, as well as first hand accounts of a complex and protracted immigration system.

“The only thing that matters is the love we have for each other, being happy because [we] are together. When we finally get together, we are going to be an amazing family,” Lourdes says.

This exhibition marks the first collaboration between Pueblo Unido Gallery and ART WORKS Projects. Rachel Woolf was a 2018 ART WORKS Projects Emerging Lens Fellow and has since exhibited her work with AWP on several occasions, including recently in AWP’s gallery space in Chicago, Stony Brook University in New York, and as part of Arts Alliance Illinois’ One State Conference in Springfield, Illinois.

Rachel Woolf is a Denver-based independent visual journalist. She specializes in documentary photography, videography and portraiture. Her work aims to intimately show aspects of humanity intersecting with economic and social issues. She has been published in The New York Times, CNN, The Washington Post, ESPN, Bloomberg, and TIME Magazine. She graduated from Ithaca College with a B.A. degree in Documentary Studies, attended the Eddie Adams Workshop XXVII in 2014 and the Missouri Photo Workshop in 2015. Woolf was selected as the 2018 ART WORKS Projects Emerging Lens Fellow in 2018 for Deported and maintains a strong collaborative presence with AWP. As a Fellow, Woolf developed her ongoing project Deported: An American Division / A Family Divided, highlighting her time with Lourdes Salazar Bautista and her family between Ann Arbor, Michigan and Mexico as they navigated life within the U.S. immigration system. Since 2018, the project has taken on many forms including exhibitions, symposiums, and publications and has been presented at venues in Chicago, Denver, New York, Michigan, and Springfield, Illinois.

Pueblo Unido Gallery uses art to raise issues of immigrant rights and social justice with universal resonance.  Pueblo Unido is a novel form of contemporary art space – a community-generated, student-run art space – one that is simultaneously attached to and part of the advocacy of a social service organization, Centro Romero, as well as a hub for world-class contemporary practice. The gallery provides opportunities for students to engage with contemporary art and creates a bridge between the wider community and the work at Centro. The gallery is integral to the mission of Centro – to be a voice for the voiceless, to support the community and be a site of political advocacy for all immigrant communities.

ART WORKS Projects leverages the power of photography and documentary film to raise awareness and educate the public about some of the most pervasive and grave human rights violations. Founded in 2006, AWP’s projects have been presented on five continents, in 35+ countries, with 225 partners, and in collaboration with more than 200 artists to produce visual advocacy tools that elicit action and engagement on social justice and human rights issues at the grassroots, media, and policy levels. AWP’s signature program, the Emerging Lens Fellowship, promotes career advancement, mentorship, and financial support to early career and underrepresented visual storytellers.

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