World renowned photographer and teacher shares his ingredients for a successful art career and talks about the importance of building authentic relationships.
“You have to have authentic relationships. You have to, even when you’re being persistent, you have to be graceful. No one is going to show your work because you’re a persistent asshole. They might show your work if you’re persistent and graceful. It’s up to you to know the difference.”
Bey’s earliest photographs were in the style of street photography. His 5-year photo series documenting the people of Harlem titled Harlem USA was displayed at the Studio Museum in Harlem in 1979. Bey has lived in Chicago since 1997 and currently teaches at Columbia College Chicago. He has had numerous exhibitions worldwide such as the Art Institute of Chicago; the National Portrait Gallery in London; and the Whitney Museum of American Art, where his works were also recently included in the 2000 Whitney Biennial. The Walker Art Center organized a mid-career survey of his work in 1995. Bey's works are included in the permanent collections of museums around the world.