Two Hudson Valley Photographers to be Honored

Photographers Lisa Levart of Nyack and Todd Shapera of Pleasantville were announced as the winners of ArtsWestchester’s annual Lawrence Salley Photography Award. The award recognizes Hudson Valley photographers whose artistic practice would be significantly advanced by the award, and who embodies the community spirit of the late Larry Salley.

Typically, this title is given in partnership with the African American Men of Westchester to a single photographer via a panel process; however, the candidate pool was so strong this year that the award is being matched by the Salley family, enabling the panel to award two winners.

Lisa Levart, whose interests lay at the intersection between fine arts and social engagement, has been creating portraits that reveal the interconnectivity between modern womanhood, ancient mythology, and nature as a life force that is sacred. Her Women of the Ramapough Lenape Nation series, which she has worked on for seven years, is a collaboration with the women from the Ramapough Lenape tribe to uncover long forgotten Lenape myths.

The work of global photojournalist Todd Shapera has captured stories from more than 57 countries. He has also spent nearly a decade traveling backroads in the mountains and seaside villages across Cuba to capture the lives of Cuban people and their communities. His environmental portraits document their dignity and inner beauty.

Levart and Shapera will both be honored at ArtsWestchester’s Arts Award luncheon on April 19. Each will receive a $1,500 cash prize and have their work featured in an upcoming exhibition in ArtsWestchester’s gallery in White Plains.

About ArtsWestchester

For more than 50 years, ArtsWestchester has been the community’s connection to the arts. Founded in 1965, it is the largest private not-for-profit arts council in New York State. Its mission is to create an equitable, inclusive, vibrant and sustainable Westchester County in which the arts are integral to and integrated into every facet of life. ArtsWestchester provides programs and services that enrich the lives of everyone in Westchester County. ArtsWestchester helps fund concerts, exhibitions and plays through grants; brings artists into schools and community centers; advocates for the arts; and builds audiences through diverse marketing initiatives. In 1998, ArtsWestchester purchased the nine-story neo-classical bank building at 31 Mamaroneck Avenue which has since been transformed into a multi-use resource for artists, cultural organizations and the community. A two-story gallery is located on the first floor of ArtsWestchester’s historic building on Mamaroneck Avenue.