From the review of the 2015 Filter Photo Festival by Kyohei Abe, Executive Director of the
Detroit Center for Contemporary Photography, featuring Lissa Rivera’s series “Beautiful Boy”:
As always, it was a pleasure to review such an amazing group of artists—displaying a range of styles, interpretations, content, and genres of photographic exploration at the Filter Photo Festival in Chicago. This year, I was very excited to see many new artists. Filter is a festival environment that brings people back from year to year. It was a pleasure to see many people from locations near and far. It is always promising to witnesses what is happening in the globe of contemporary photography and to recognize how technology and image making are changing. More personally, it is inspiring to see how each artist presents his or her work—not only visually, but through their exploration, excitement, and commitment to the ideas and techniques implemented in the work. As a reviewer, my role reaches beyond critique and is equally focused on being an eager receptor to those enthusiasms. The artists showcased here delve into the ambiguities that arise within the depiction of gender, identity, and relationships. These photographers have all successfully conveyed inspiring and unique perspectives on our contemporary world through their own, unique, voices. I want to thank and congratulate, not only those who are selected here, but all participating artists for sharing their works and visions with me.