Harthan ’21 displays her award-winning photo at Bronx Documentary Center

Harthan ’21 displays her award-winning photo at Bronx Documentary Center

TMI alumna Chloe Harthan ’21 was selected to display her award-winning photo entitled “Identity is a Myth – Who is Ever Truly Real” at the Bronx Documentary Center in Bronx, NY, in September 2021.  

In the summer of 2020, Chloe took a summer course with The School of the Art Institute of Chicago’s (SAIC’s) Early College Program and was assigned to make use of working outdoors because of social distancing practices. While most of her work was done through painting, her professors encouraged her to step outside of her comfort zone by trying a new medium for her artistic expressions. Photography was her new medium of choice and she enlisted the help of a friend and fellow TMI graduate, Gavin Freiler ’20, to model for her photo.

Chloe spent the summer of 2020 and her senior year of high school exploring her relationship with identity. During that time, the focus of her work was how one’s surroundings have impact on their identity. The thought-provoking photo and title, “Identity is a Myth – Who is Ever Truly Real,” is a direct reflection of her journey through identity exploration. In Chloe’s photo, the water represents the flow of daily life and everything in it, and the fabric represents identity. She beautifully portrays how both are changed and moved by what occurs around us and how everyone’s water connects, allowing you to shape other’s water and fabric in the photo of their life. Her conclusion was that it is impossible to fully control how your own identity is formed, but what can be controlled is how you will form other people’s identity.

This photo won a Regional Gold Key and a National Gold Key for the Scholastic Arts and Writing Competition before being selected for the Bronx Documentary Center.  Chloe’s photo underwent an extremely selective process in order to be displayed in the Bronx. Over 230,000 award-winning entries from the 2021 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards were submitted and Chloe’s submission was one of only 166 chosen for exhibition. She was incredibly surprised and elated when she was notified her work was chosen. This great honor is her first official showing of her work outside of school. 

Chloe currently attends The Art Institute of Chicago where she is studying to earn her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree.