“Johns Edmonds is a gifted young artist with a penetrating eye. With an insight and subtle aesthetic understanding, he uses a gentle lens to capture the performative gesture of young men on the streets of America. His beautiful, subtly complex compositions re-imagines and redefines the black man subject.” — Carrie Mae Weems
John Edmonds is photographer who lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. He is most recognized for his portrait projects ‘Hoods’ and ‘All Eyes On Me’, where he focused on the performative gestures and self-fashioning of young black men on the streets of America, as well as his evocative portraits of lovers, close friends and strangers.
With his photo series “Hoods,” John Edmonds, aims to provide more questions than answers. In capturing a spate of faceless portraits in colored hoodies photographed from behind, the Yale MFA graduate is not only concerned with the representation of contemporary black masculinity and racial perceptions, but also how a simple item of clothing can, in essence, become a symbol. And not just any kind of symbol, but a symbol translated and contorted through the national gaze. Thus, by obscuring the wearer’s face and identity, Edmonds confronts prejudiced notions surrounding black identity.
From a recent interview with The Fader:
“I hope my work can reflect the reality of this country right now. The fact that people look at my photos and are reminded of Trayvon Martin shows that we are living in a time where people are aware of how photography and visuals reflect social justice and the Black Lives Matter movement.”