Meet a Lab Assistant: Guanyu(Gary) Xu

How long have you been a Lab Assistant at LATITUDE? 
I have been working here for almost one and a half years.

What do you enjoy most about working at LATITUDE?
It’s a great experience to learn new things about printing and scanning, as well as meeting people from the photographic community in Chicago. It gives me a sense of community. Also, Latitude let me start the Seasonal Print Exhibition. So, I love the possibility that can engender here.

Tell us a little bit about your art and projects you are currently focusing on. 
 I’m working on an installation using raw neon tubes and projections. In general, I use photography and installation to examine the intersectionality between race, sexuality, and citizenship. 

What drives you to create?
To question ‘‘who has the power to represent’’ is at the core of my practice.  My exposure to American culture as a teenager through films and TV shows planted an American Dream in my mind. However, my study of American history has resulted in my knowledge of deep rooted anti-Chinese sentiments. Specifically, regarding sexuality, the dominance of white, macho gays has meant that I became an undesirable alien in this “land of freedom.” It became necessary for me to use my work to examine the power of representation from the a different perspective.

What is the title of the last book you read?
Radicant by Nicolas Bourriaud

What type of music are you currently listening to? 
 I can’t handle noisy music. Amy Winehouse, Beatles, Leonard Cohen, and Coldplay are my usual choices. 

What artists are currently inspiring you?
Interdisciplinary artists that work on themes of migration, social justice, inequality, and etc.

Guanyu (Gary) Xu helps run our lounge gallery space where artists are chosen quarterly to participate, with each exhibition organized around a different theme. The chosen artists get an opportunity to display their prints in the Filter Photo/LATITUDE lounge gallery space  and on our online gallery

Check out his work on his website.