BIO

Russell Frederick is a self-taught photographer of Panamanian heritage born and raised in Brooklyn, NY. Mr. Frederick’s mission with his visual activism and educational work is to redefine the visual narratives of black and brown people with photographs showing their humanity. Russell has made a name for himself over the past two decades with his medium format black & white film photos and silver gelatin prints while the industry has embraced digital photography. His twenty-year documentation of Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn has been exhibited widely across the U.S, Europe, Africa, Asia, and Australia. In 2014, Russell was invited by the Addis Foto Festival to introduce the good people of Bed Stuy to Ethiopians. During his five-month visit, he taught and co-produced a series of photography workshops sponsored by the United Nations Educational Science and Cultural Organization to over three hundred Africans in Ethiopia and South Sudan. The success of the workshops are still resonating as it has helped springboard the employment and careers of several photographers (men and women) in photojournalism, documentary photography and fine art. One of his mentees is now Prime Minister Abby’s chief photographer, several are represented by art galleries in NYC & London and every year since 2016 at least one of his students has been accepted to the highly competitive and acclaimed NYTimes Portfolio Revue. Russell’s photography has brought him many accolades in the form of grants and awards from the Innovation Fund, the US Embassy of Ethiopia, the Open Society Foundation, the New York Foundation of the Arts, the Brooklyn Arts Council and the Gordon Parks Foundation to name a few. Outside of his documentary and educational commitments, Russell has also photographed such notables as President Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Mayor David Dinkins, and fashion icon, Dapper Dan to be brief. He has also photographed Grammy and Oscar award-winning talents D’Angelo, Jill Scott, Lauryn Hill, Lenny kravitz, Tedeschi Trucks blues band-member Saunders Sermons, Barry Jenkins, Regina King, Terrence Nance, Ossie Davis, and Ruby Dee. Besides these vast accomplishments, Mr. Frederick’s work has been published and featured in several books, newspapers, media companies and magazines such as the NYTimes, NBC News, the Daily Beast, Bloomberg News, New York Magazine, Slate, the Photo District News, VICE, the Wall Street Journal, Numero Homme Berlin, Spiegel Magazine, Marie Claire Italia, the Root, Ebony, The BK Reader, the Amsterdam News, Hycide, the American Society of Picture Professionals Magazine, the World Photography Organisation Magazine, Black: A Celebration of Culture by Dr. Deborah Willis, Timeless by the Kamoinge photographers, DandyLion: The Black Dandy & Street Style by Shantrelle P. Lewis and Brooklyn on my Mind by Dr. Myrrah Brown-Green to be brief.

 

In addition to these publishing credits, Russell has collaborated, been featured or shot still photos with Oscar, Emmy, Sundance Film, NAACP IMage award winning directors Spike Lee on the Netflix series ‘She’s Gotta Have it and Brooklyn Da-Republic’, Lisa Cortes’s ‘The Remix: Hip-Hop X Fashion’, Jessica Beshir’s ‘KINGS’ and Thomas Alan Harriss’ film ‘Through a Lens Darkly.’ Besides these film achievements Mr. Frederick continues to diversify his portfolio by curating critically acclaimed exhibits ‘Power & Grace: the Black Woman and Breaking Point’ for the Kamoinge collective. He has been a juror for the New York Foundation of the Arts grant and for Photoville NY. Russell has also helped raise funds with his artwork for the National Association of Black Journalists and the Kamoinge-Ferman Scholarship at Columbia College in Chicago. Mr. Frederick has had exhibits, presentations and lectures at NYU, the School of Visual Arts, Columbia University, Penn State University, the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, the International Center of Photography, Columbia College in Chicago, Monroe College, the Museum of Contemporary Photography in Chicago, the Lowe Art Museum at the University of Miami, Fl, the Hammonds House Museum in Atlanta, Ga, the Silver Eye Center of Photography in Pittsburgh, Pa, the Brooklyn Museum, the MOCADA Museum, the Reginald Lewis Museum in Maryland, AIPAD (the Association for International Art Dealers ) NY, the National Arts Club NY, the Nathan Cummings Foundation, the Aperture Foundation, Photoville, the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, the Weeksville Heritage Center in Brooklyn, NY, the Bronx Documentary Center, the BRIC Arts Media Gallery, the Rush Arts Gallery, the Rotunda Gallery, the Brooklyn Academy of Music, B&H Photo, Adorama, the Visa Pour L’Image photo festival in France, the Addis Foto Festival in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, the Bamako Encounters Biennial in Bamako, Mali, the Reportage photo festival in Sydney, Australia, the Lodz photo festival in Lodz, Poland, the On the Move Photo Festival in Cortona, Italy, the Angkor Foto Festival in Angkor, Cambodia, the Shanghai photo festival in Shanghai, China and the Goethe Institute in Accra, Ghana to name a few. Russell is also a proud member of the historic semi-centennial African & African American photo collective Kamoinge for which he has served as Vice President since 2016. Mr. Frederick’s work has been acquired to the permanent collections of the Contemporary Museum of Photography in Chicago, the Musee National du Mali in Bamako, Mali, the NoVo Foundation, the Open Society Foundation, the Gordon Parks Museum, the Library of Congress, the Brooklyn Public Library, the Danny Simmons art collection and a vast amount of private collectors. Lastly, one of Russell’s proudest achievements is his mentoring of young people from his hometown in Brooklyn. Mr. Frederick has committed endless amounts of time, leadership and resources since 2011 to be of service to young men of color who need guidance with the Kings Against Violence Initiative where he serves as a board member.