Dionne Lee works in photography, collage, and video, to explore her personal relationship to the natural world. Engaging ideas of power, agency, the fragility and resilience of land, and racial histories in the United States, Lee’s work considers the complications and dual legacies that exist within representations of the American landscape. Traditionally presented as a refuge, a fertile land tended for prosperity, a space of peak contentment and peace it is also a site of violence, alienation, and worked to exhaustion.


b. New York, NY, 1988
Lives and works in Oakland, CA


2017   MFA, California College of the Arts, San Francisco, CA
2010   BAFA, Fine Arts, Alfred University, Alfred, NY

Solo** and Two Person Exhibitions
2019 Continuum: Aspen Mays + Dionne Lee (forthcoming, September 2019), Silver Eye, Pittsburgh, PA
Solo Exhibition** (forthcoming, Summer 2019), Interface Gallery, Oakland, CA
Touch Stone, with Kirsten Brehmer, CTRL+SHFT, Oakland, CA
2018  The Break Before the Swell**, LightSource, San Francisco, CA
Meeting Place, with Nkiruka Oparah, LAND AND SEA, Oakland, CA
          Deep Horizon, with Richard Jonathan Nelson, Embark Gallery, San Francisco, CA
2017  Eleven and a Half Hours, with Shirin AbediniradAggregate Space, Oakland, CA

Selected Group Exhibitions
2018   Futurescape Spells Billboard Project, Oakland, CA (various locations)
Re-Evaluation Station, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, CA
New Psychedelics, Humble Arts Foundation, Online
           RELAY 2, Slide Space 123 / Mills College, Oakland, CA
           CCA Gala, California College of the Arts, San Francisco, CA
2017   The Black Infinity, No Place Gallery, Columbus, OH
           An Idea of a Boundary, San Francisco Arts Commission, San Francisco, CA
           Set on Freedom (Screening), Queens Museum, Queens, NY
           Have Your Own / Tenga Tu Propio, DTA, New York, NY
           I Expected Something Up Out of the Water Not the Shadow in the Wave That Rose, MFA Thesis Exhibition,
           Fused Space, San Francisco, CA
           Debtfair (participating artist), a project of Occupy Museums, Whitney Biennial 2017, Whitney Museum, New York, NY
           Back to the Garden, Root Division, San Francisco, CA
           Hold, California College of the Arts, San Francisco, CA
           MFA Now 2017, Root Division, San Francisco, CA
           30th Annual Barclay Simpson MFA Award Exhibition, Wattis Institute Perry Family Event Center, San Francisco, CA
2016   13x13x13, California College of the Arts, San Francisco, CA
           The Reconsidered Landscape, Perry and Carlson, Mount Vernon, WA
           Photography is Magic, Curated by Charlotte Cotton, Aperture Foundation, New York, NY
2015   Outside Ourselves, Ourselves Outside, 1340 Bryant Street, San Francisco, CA
2013   Transition, The Rita K. Hillman Education Gallery, International Center of Photography, New York, NY
2010   Curate NYC, Rush Arts Gallery, New York, NY
2009   Aster Tide Auk, Potential Life Studios, Rochester, NY

Awards & Honors
2019 Artist-in-Residence, Woodstock Center for Photography, Woodstock, NY
2018 San Francisco Museum of Modern Art SECA Award (Finalist)
2016   Barclay Simpson Award
          Graduate Photography Residency, Anderson Ranch Center, Snowmass, CO
2011   Photography Fellow, Baxter Street @ Camera Club of New York, New York, NY

2012   Young, Gifted, and Black: Transforming Visual Media, co-curated with Shanté Cozier, Camera Club of New York
New York, NY

Selected Bibliography
On land, landscape, and representation, interview by Christina Wiles, June 2018
Wolfman New Life Quarterly, Issue #2, April 2018
An Idea of a Boundary, The Brooklyn Rail, February 2018
Critic's Pick, Artforum, November 2017
Making Iran and Oakland Feel Like the Same Place, KQED Arts, September 2017
10 Fall 2017 Exhibitions Not to Be Missed, San Francisco Chronicle, August 2017
we are not citizens / we are magicians, Simon Fraser University Press, 2017

2019 Adjunct Faculty, Undergraduate Photography, San Francisco Art Institute
2018   Lecturer, Undergraduate Photography, Stanford University
  Adjunct Faculty, Undergraduate Photography, San Francisco Art Institute
   Lecturer, Undergraduate Photography, California College of the Arts
2017    Lecturer, Undergraduate Photography, California College of the Arts