|EN FOCO | Photographers|
Born: 1969, San Francisco, CA
Resides: Tucson, AZ
B.A. in Art History & Studio Art
M.F.A. in Photography
Honorable Mention, En Foco’s New Works Photography Awards #10 (2006-07)
William Wilson moved permanently to the Navajo Reservation at the age of 10. He attended the Bureau of Indian Affair’s Tuba City Boarding School from 1978 to 1983. In addition to his profession as an artist and photographer, he is also an arts educator and community organizer. Wilson has taught sculpture at the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, NM, was a Visiting Professor of Photography at the University of Arizona in Tucson, and also served two years as a photojournalist in Central America for the Associated Press. He is currently the co-director of the Barrio Anita Community Mural Project (BAMP), the largest public art commission in Tucson’s history.
Wilson’s work provides a glimpse into the complex contemporary negotiation with a land we have become alienated from, our dis-ease in understanding who we are, and possible paths for healing. Wilson’s work focuses on Navajo people and their relationship to the land. “His works are poetic and gritty meditations on the human condition and Wilson’s relationship to Dinetah, Navajo land,” notes Joe Baker, Lloyd Kiva New Curator of Fine Art at the Heard Museum. “In my work, there are stories that I grew up with, stories bringing together the cultural weave from which I come. These stories are personal to me as an individual and as a member/citizen of a people, therefore they must be presented and received with respect,” Wilson says. “I want my work to strengthen Indians with examples of resistance, and the possibilities of controlling one’s own representation.”