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Maya Fuhr’s Portraiture is a Rite of Passage for NYC’s New Creatives

The young photographer captures anyone who is worth knowing in NYC’s budding art scene.

by Andrew Nunes
Jan 8 2016, 7:00pm

India Salvor Menuez by Maya Fuhr in collaboration with India Salvor Menuez. All images courtesy the artists.

The next generation of NYC-based artists, designers, and others from the creative class are coming-of-age and photographer Maya Fuhr takes intimate “yearbook” portraits to capture the moment. Fuhr tells The Creators Project, Photography gives me a purpose and it usually highlights a certain affinity I have towards artists or “cool” individuals…I find myself allured by their spirit.”

If Fuhr photographs you, it’s something like a symbolic badge of approval, a new rite of passage, an assertion that you are a part of New York’s new creative visionaries. Among her muses are actress and renaissance woman India Salvor Menuez and performance artist Alexandra Marzella aka @artwerk6666.  Recently, Menuez landed a starring role next to Twin Peaks star Ray Wise and Marzella made big waves at Art Basel Miami this year. Although Fuhr only met the two this year, her infatuation with them is evident. She says, “I don’t think I’ve met any woman who doesn’t have a girl crush on [India and Alexandra]. Capturing Ally’s confidence and India’s elegant essence is easy for me. They are performers whose practices are not contrived — they really stay true to themselves and their respective performative manifestos.”

David Moses (of Moses Gauntlett Cheng) by Maya Fuhr

Although traditional, but stylized portraiture is Fuhr’s medium of choice, the scope of her artistic relationship with rising NYC art stars extends further. Different forms of artistic collaboration and modifications on the typical “subject and photographer” relationship happen in various projects she undertakes. Fuhr’s roster of other creative muses include David MosesLogan Jackson, Petra Collins, and Michael Bailey Gates.

Alongside artist Nicole Dagenais, Fuhr produced creative vignettes of distinguished artists including Jeanette Hayes, Chloe Wise and Olivia Bee. The work of this series consists of intimate portraits of the artists in their studios, presented side-by-side with images of their scrapbooks, diaries, and other fragments of their creative processes. Fuhr says, “The artists’ journal entries were printed to be about four times the size of their bodies, so the piece took the focus away from the subject’s appearance and highlighted their magical minds.”

Jeanette Hayes by Maya Fuhr in collaboration with Nicole Dagenais

Also of note is a zine that Fuhr released in collaboration with illustrator Michelle LeFade. Titled Like Honey and presented at the Toronto Feminist Zine Fest, the publication is a dreamy celebration of femininity consisting of a diverse array of portraits of women next to mixed-media renditions of the same photographs. The zine’s diptychs are a harmonious mix of abstraction and concreteness, representation and reality, and are available online as prints for purchase.

Chloe Wise by Maya Fuhr in collaboration with Nicole Dagenais

Image from “Like Honey” by Maya Fuhr in collaboration with Michelle LeFade

Petra Collins by Maya Fuhr 

Alexandra Marzella by Maya Fuhr 

For more of Maya Fuhr’s portraiture and photography, check out her Tumblr and her website. Her Instagram is like a highlight reel of who is making waves in New York.

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