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Expanding the Walls

Expanding the Walls: Making Connections Between Photography, History and Community is an eight-month photography-based program for a select group of students enrolled in a high school or GED program. Participants work with a diverse group of arts professionals to explore issues related to community, history, and culture while learning the basics of photography in a regimen of art workshops, discussion groups, and field excursions. Expanding the Walls uses the work of renowned photographer James VanDerZee as a catalyst for discussion and art-making. The program culminates with a celebration of the participants' work.

Are you an Expanding the Walls alum? We would love to keep in touch with you! Send us an email.

Applications are now open for the next cycle of Expanding the Walls. The application deadline is Monday, November 8th, 2021 by 11:59 pm.

For the 2022 cycle, we are accepting applications from teens who live or attend high schools, or equivalency programs, in Harlem and upper Manhattan neighborhoods, as well as the South Bronx. Meetings will take place online and may shift to in person in the spring or summer.

Program dates: Every Tuesday from January 4—August 2nd, 2022. 

Meetings: Every Tuesday from 4:00–6:30 pm
Starting in July program will meet two times a week
Tuesdays 4:00–6:30 pm
Thursdays 11:00 am–2:00 pm
All public school holidays and breaks are observed by the program

Expanding the Walls

Online Exhibitions

What Have We Stopped Hiding?

Expanding the Walls 2021

The online photography exhibition What Have We Stopped Hiding?: Expanding the Walls 2021 features work by the seventeen artists in the 2021 cohort of The Studio Museum in Harlem’s annual program

Hearts in Isolation

Expanding the Walls 2020

Hearts in Isolation presents work by fifteen artists in the 2020 cohort of Expanding the Walls: Making Connections Between Photography, History, and Community. During the eight-month program,

Watch | Expanding the Walls: Making Connections Between Photography, History and Community

Expanding the Walls Participants

Expanding the Walls 2016

Expanding the Walls 2016 Participants Grace Amilcar Alannis Ariana Chelsea Giordalis Richard Dalen Jibreel Amber Joyel Ashley

Expanding the Walls 2015

Expanding the Walls 2015 Participants Angelica Saragine Henry Zainab Amanda Alana Akash Sterling Nola Tiera Demettrius Xiaoxuan

Expanding the Walls 2014

Expanding the Walls 2014 Participants Brendly D'Angelo Kelvin Andrew Gilberto Jesus Christopher Sarah Justin Gabriella Steven Maia Atzimba Alice

Expanding the Walls 2013

Expanding the Walls 2013 Participants

Expanding the Walls 2012

Expanding the Walls 2012 Participants

Expanding the Walls 2011

Expanding the Walls 2011 Participants

Expanding the Walls 2010

Expanding the Walls 2010 Participants

Expanding the Walls 2009

Expanding the Walls 2009 Participants 

Expanding the Walls 2008

Expanding the Walls 2008 Participants  Alani  Michelle  Sofia  Ivan  Chanelle  Christina  Christeen  Nicole  Keisha  Tempestt