Context 2021

Juried by Juli Lowe


Filter Photo is pleased to announce Context 2021, our annual spring open call for photography-based work juried by Juli Lowe, former director of the Catherine Edelman Gallery.

On view at Filter Space March 26th  through May 1st. A juror’s choice award and an honorable mention will be announced at the opening reception on March 26th.

"Context 2021 is a reflection of our time: intense, challenging, deliberate, and self-reflective. The photographs featured in this exhibition contemplate life during a pandemic, family heritage, and intimacy while offering hope through community. The images reconstruct traumatic childhood memories and search for identity and belonging within a new culture. Others examine human interaction and the power of touch as well as complex family lineages. They explore challenges within parenthood; the anxieties and fears for our children's well-being and safety. They speak to the Black American experience and unveil the nuanced effects of our global climate crisis. Context 2021 shows a vast array of photographic practices that reveal the common bonds that tie us all together.
I’d like to thank Filter Photo, Jennifer Murray, Jeff Phillips and all the applicants. This process proves there is so much exciting work being made and I encourage all of the artists to keep pushing boundaries and sharing your work with the world. We need your voices!"

- Juli Lowe

Click here to watch Juli's talk during the opening reception on March 26th!

Participating Artists: 

Kalee Appleton

Bremner Benedict

Cody Bratt

Shawn Bush *

Elizabeth M. Claffey

Julianne Clark

Isabella Convertino 

Eli Craven 

Michael Darough 

Jorge Ariel Escobar 

Leslie Fry 

Allison Grant

Kayla Suzanne Holdgreve

Emma Creighton Hopson 

Ethan Aaro Jones 

* Honorable Mention
** Juror's Choice Winner

Image Credit: Allison Grant

Tehan Ketema 

Jiatong Lu 

Noelle McCleaf

Jenny Rafalson 

Astrid Reischwitz

Rosalie Rosenthal

Krista Svalbonas

Stephanie Taiber 

Rashod Taylor

Anthony R. Vizzari 

Sara J. Winston 

Iris Wu

Connor Young 

Jiawei Zhao **

Lilia Ziamou 

Juli Lowe was named the Director of the Catherine Edelman Gallery in 2015. She was hired five years prior as the Assistant Director and within a few years, Lowe helped implement new initiatives including, Ctrl+P: Photography Taken Offline, now is in its ninth year; Art Mixer, special events that engage younger collector groups; and several of the gallery's web series including, Chat Room, Hot Off the Press and Work From Home: Inside the Artist's Studio. She also oversees The Chicago Project (an online gallery started in 2003 to promote unrepresented photographers in the Chicagoland area) and has promoted the work of these emerging photographers through exhibitions, acquisitions by private and public collections and press outlets. In 2020, Lowe curated New Formations, an exhibition that featured work by four emerging artists who use the photograph as material to construct a new visual language.


As an instructor for, Lowe leads courses about pricing artwork and the fine art market. Lowe is an advisory board member for the Arnold Newman Prize, is on the review committee for proposals for the exhibition calendar (2020+2021) at Filter Space and has juried several photography competitions including The Arnold Newman Prize for New Directions in Photographic Portraiture, All About Photo Awards 2020 'The Mind's Eye' and Lens 2016 International Juried Photography Exhibition.


Lowe travels extensively for the Catherine Edelman Gallery, attending and participating in art fairs throughout the United States and internationally, constantly engaging in the conversation and education of photography. With a background in photography, Juli previously worked at The Maine Media Workshops and as a producer for print and television campaigns.


This exhibition is partially sponsored by The Illinois Arts Council Agency and a CityArts Grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs & Special Events.

Image Credit: Jiawei Zhao

Exhibition Dates: March 26 - May 1, 2021

Opening Reception: March 26, 5 - 9 pm CT
Location: Filter Space | 1821 W. Hubbard St., Ste. 207

Gallery Hours: Monday – Friday | 11 am – 5 pm, Saturday | 12 - 4 pm


Filter Space

1821 W Hubbard St | Suite 207

Chicago | Illinois | 60622



Monday - Friday | 11am - 5pm 

Saturday | by appointment

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Filter Photo is partly supported by grants from The MacArthur Funds for Culture, Equity, and the Arts at the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, The Illinois Arts Council Agency, a CityArts Grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs & Special Events, The Fogelson Family Foundation, and The Halo Hill Charitable Fund.