Adjunct Associate Professor of Photography Peter Kayafas has received a 2019 Guggenheim Fellowship. This year 168 fellowships were awarded by the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation from about 3,000 submissions assessed by a network of former Guggenheim Fellows. These annual grants support up to a year of work so that applicants can have more time to dedicate to their pursuits. Selection is based on professional accomplishments and the potential for more achievement. This year’s fellows are from 49 scholarly and creative disciplines in the arts, literature, science, and other fields.
Kayafas started teaching photography at Pratt Institute in 2000. An accomplished photographer, his black-and-white images of the American West and sites abroad such as in Mexico and Cuba range from expressive street photography to atmospheric documentary shots of people and places. His monographs include The Merry Cemetery of Sapanta on a Romanian burial ground in which the tombstones have colorfully painted biographies of the deceased, O Public Road! Photographs of America drawn from the thousands of miles he has traveled across the United States, and Totems on abandoned structures he found deteriorating along back roads of the American West. His newest book—The Way West—will be released in 2020. His photographs are in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art, the Brooklyn Museum, the New York Public Library, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the New Orleans Museum of Art, the Art Institute of Chicago, and others.
In addition to his work at Pratt, Kayafas is the director of the Eakins Press Foundation, a nonprofit publisher supporting literature and art that continues the vision of American painter Thomas Eakins. He is a co-chair on the Board of Directors of the Corporation for the Saratoga Springs, New York, artists’ retreat Yaddo.
Read more about the 2019 Guggenheim Fellowships.
Image: Peter Kayafas, Cripple Creek, Colorado, 2011