United States of America

Michael Sell

22.11.22 16.12.22

While at ´ace, Michael Sell took advantage of the tranquility and the solitude of The Tower studio to move out of his usual medium and activities (photography, portraying and teaching) and gently slide in the realm of watercolour landscapes picturing the streets of Buenos Aires and its particular details. Equipped with his brushes, some notebooks and the watercolours themselves, Mike was able to refresh his ways of seeing, to enjoy the city with a new perspective and to experience first-hand the heated frenzy that football generates in the local population, as Argentina’s national team won the World Cup—and Mike was there to capture it all, watching every match elbow-to-elbow with local fans. From these experiences, a series of pictures came to be, which were shown together with a notebook filled with the watercolour landscapes.


I am an educator and artist living and working in Northeastern Oregon. I am primarily a photographer who shoots with a large format film camera, creating portraits that conceptually revolve around different subcultures.

In Camera Lucida, author Roland Barthes declared photography the medium of “that-has-been,” immediately relegating the instantaneous nature of the photograph’s subject to the graveyard of the past; while serving as a replicator of reality, photographs also are merely documents of a subject that will soon come to pass. Recently, I have been reflecting on that notion as I create new images, and I have come to accept that my photographs—like all photographs—precede the death of their subjects. This is the most true when I am making portraits. My current body of work, begun in 2016, consists of portraits of fans taken at concerts by the rock band Phish. In most cases, the subjects are people I have only just met, and these intimate images offer a stark contrast to the colorful, energetic psychedelia of Phish’s live shows. Through these images I am examining constructed personality, taxonomy, and how I expose elements of myself—namely, my own fandom and mortality—through images of others.

Michael Sell
1981 | Detroit, MI, USA
Lives and works in La Grande, OR, USA

2009 | MFA Photography, Kendall College of Art and Design, Grand Rapids, MI, USA

2020 | RANSOM 2, Brooklyn Wayfarers Gallery, Brooklyn, NY
2020 | EOU Art Department Faculty Exhibition, Nightingale Gallery, La Grande, OR
2020 | Identity, Midwest Center for Photography, Wichita, KS
2015 | Urban Institute for Contemporary Art, Grand Rapids, MI
2014 | The Homunculus Collection, Hobusepea Gallery, Tallinn, Estonia

2020 | A Portrait of Your Past, 12th International Conference on the Image, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
2019 | Photo Gods & Rock ’n’ Roll Monsters, First Annual Phish Studies Conference, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR
2019 | Photo Gods & Rock ’n’ Roll Monsters, Popular and American Culture Association National Conference, Washington, D.C.
2016 | New Portraits, Society for Photographic Education NW Conference, Seattle, WA
2014 | Invited speaker, artist talk, Hobusepea Galerii, Tallinn, Estonia

Related Activities

´aceNITE, Exhibitions

Artists in Dialogue


What is the nature of reality? Do we all experience the same reality? How is it revealed?

Catching sleep every night, when insomnia appears, thinking does not stop and our eyes remain open even though we close them, when anguish or perhaps fear of increasingly threatening shadows occurs… it is at that moment that we are in a bit out of reality? On the contrary, when we fall asleep and dream, within the dream, no matter how absurd what we dream is, we feel that it is real. How do you experience the supernatural, that which cannot be explained by the laws of nature or that exceeds its limits, that set off realities, known by revelation or admitted by faith? Do these facts, which are not entitatively natural, exist as well as the facts of the natural world?

What are the limits? Do these limits exist? Or do you flow between wakefulness, sleep and the state in between?

In Insomnis, Heesoo Agnes Kim plays with the notion of dreams, deals with issues of self-identification, explores the limits between time, light and life. With his camera, Mitchell Sell discovers the phenomenon of blurring of social and political boundaries that occurred in Buenos Aires when Argentina won its third World Cup. Alex Karolyi in The Unknown, works with true supernatural and paranormal stories (in this case related to the house of ´ace itself) in a performative way, considering that everyone has a story to share, whether visible or invisible. Finally, Hee Ju Im in Outputs investigates those sounds that are constantly heard but overlooked, a being that is everywhere but does not reveal itself, a being that cannot define limits or a being that erases limits, and therefore both a being of “otherness” thrown out of bounds. All of them, from different perspectives, reveal to us fluctuating aspects of our “realities”.


Artist-in-Residence International Program

View map

International Airport

Ministro Pistarini- Ezeiza (EZE)
Buenos Aires
45' to 60' trip

Domestic Airport

Aeroparque Jorge Newbery
Buenos Aires


38, 39, 41, 42, 59, 63, 65, 67, 68, 151, 152, 161, 184, 194 and 168 (stop in the front door)


D Line (Green)
Olleros Station (4 blocks, 4')


Mitre Line (either to Leon Suarez or Mitre)
Colegiales Station (1 block, 1')

The Latin America's Paris

Buenos Aires is Argentine Republic's capital city. With 15,000,000 inhabitants, it is one of the largest cities in Latin America and one of the 10 most populous urban centers in the world. Its cosmopolitan and urban character vibrates to the rhythm of a great cultural offer that includes monuments, churches, museums, art galleries, opera, music and theaters; squares, parks and gardens with old groves; characteristic neighborhoods; large shopping centers and fairs. Here we also find a very good lodging facilities, with accommodation ranging from hostels to five-star hotels of the main international chains. Buenos Aires also show off about its variety of restaurants with all the cuisines of the world, as well as to have cafes and flower kiosks on every corner.

A neighborhood founded on the Jesuit farms in the 17th century

We are located in Colegiales neighborhood where the tree-lined streets, some of which still have their original cobblestones, invite you to walk. Although the apartment buildings advance, low houses still predominate. It is a district of the city where about 20 TV production companies, design studios, artist workshops and the Rock&Pop radio have been located. The neighborhood also has six squares, one of which pays homage to Mafalda, the Flea Market, shops, restaurants and cafes like its neighboring Barrios de Palermo and Belgrano, with which it limits.

Artist-in-Residence International Program

2024 Open Call #3
Residencies 2024

July 31st, 2024

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