44

Graduation

grad·u·a·tion  [graj-oo-ey-shuhn]

noun

1.  Having an academic degree or diploma.

2.  Arrangement in degrees, levels or ranks.

3.  Ending an old beginning.

4. Beginning of something new.

This ethnographic photo essay documents the residents of Vassar College Town House, 44, on a rainy day with nothing better to do than to wander down Hooker Avenue in Dia de los Muertos face-paint. Senior week on a college campus is a funny thing, you find yourself actually doing many of the things you’ve always wanted to. Whether it be scaling roofs, setting off a finale of fireworks, streaking through campus covered in paint and glitter or simply appreciating the people by your side during these stream of consciousness adventures.   

For me, that is what this project embodies, an appreciation of what is “right now.” I wanted to document a house of senior boys, a house of best friends, a house of dynamic and interesting minds that are about to be released into the so called, “real world.” I wanted to capture and to preserve our “right now,” where the most important thing at the end of the day is lighting a spliff with your best friend on your stoop and watching the thunderstorm. Sometimes face-paint helps to magnify the "right now." It tends to nudge and poke out the weird facial expressions, the odd laughter and the buried stories that make up all solid college memories.

So, “Where are you right now?”

Right now, I can’t stop quietly grinning, thinking about the people that have made me appreciate all the “right nows” over the past 4 years.

Thank you.

Name: Noah Smiley Michelon

Age: 22

Occupation:

1. Student, Vassar College, Class of 2013

2. International Man of Mystery 

Question: "Where are you right now?"

Answer: “Wherever I may be.”

Any song of your choice:

“House of the Rising Sun” - The Animals

 

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 Name: Dante Fotios Varotsis

Age:  22

Occupation:

1. Student, Vassar College, Class of 2013

2. Researcher

Question: "Where are you right now?"

Answer: “The very beginning of something new.”

Any song of your choice: 

"Fishin" - Takenobu

Name: Juan Bautista "Juani" Dominguez Estevez

Age: 22

Occupation:

1. Student, Vassar College, Class of 2013

2. A wanderer in all possible manifestations

Question: "Where are you right now?"

Answer: “Funny you ask – I'm actually in Buenos Aires, Argentina. I'm on my apartment balcony enjoying some mate and galletitas Satur with friends as I look down on Parque Chacabuco and Medalla Milagrosa. Que tardesita que nos toco, Juani. Que tardesita....”

Any song of your choice:

"La Bomba Loca" - Gustavo Cordera

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Name:  James Ellison (Turak)

Age:  21

Occupation: 

Sea Urchin Befriender

Question: "Where are you right now?"

Answer: “Fell into a hole.”

Any song of your choice:

“Flying Lotus” - Pretty Boy Strut

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Name:  Aaron

Age:  21

Occupation:

1. Student, Vassar College, Class of 2013

2. Musician

Question: "Where are you right now?”

Answer:  “Gone Fishin’”

Any song of your choice:

“Wus Good/Curious” - Party Next Door

May 2013 | 35mm/120mm

Participants: Noah Michelon, Dante Varotsis, Juan Bautista Dominguez, Jamie Turak, Aaron Steinberg



Cebe Loomis is a recent Vassar graduate with a degree in Anthropology and hopes to dedicate her career to further exploring the power of anthropological photography as a form of art activism. Specializing in ethnographic photo essays, Loomis has conducted research in various countries, from exploring the street art movements in India, Senegal, Argentina and Germany, to exploring the deeply rooted nationalism still present in Cuba's socio-economic framework today, to illuminating the hopes and fears of a group of boys graduating from high school in Malibu, California.  

Link to Cebe Loomis' photography blog: inmyyesterday.blogspot.com 

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