Light Work Galleries and Photography Lab Reopens to the Public

With enormous pleasure, Light Work announces the reopening of our state-of-the-art photography Lab and exhibition spaces to the public! Over the last three months, we have taken incremental steps toward pre-pandemic “normal.” At Light Work, we have seen a progression from essential staff only to a green light on welcoming Light Work’s community of photographers and photo enthusiasts into the Kathleen O. Ellis, Hallway Galleries, and Lab. For Light Work and arts institutions across the nation, the last year brought unprecedented trials that we at Light Work have tried to meet with a determined and creative dexterity and an unwavering commitment to support, amplify, and #keepartgoing. It’s so exciting for us to welcome patrons back into our exhibition spaces for in-person gallery openings, artist talks, and curator conversations. 

Recently appointed Light Work director Dan Boardman says, “It is nothing less than thrilling for us to open our doors after more than a year of closure. I’m looking forward to the creative energy our patrons and members bring to this space. I’m pleased to share our calendar of exhibitions going into 2022. We are going to bring exciting and exceptional work to our community here in Syracuse, and we hope you will join us in celebrating with the artists at Light Work in person.”

Wendy Red Star: Baaeétitchish (One Who Is Talented), Gallery Opening, 2019 Courtesy of the Julie K. Herman

Light Work’s reopening includes a community-wide invitation to students, educators, local organizations, and university partners to schedule use of the main gallery, library, and lab studio for exhibition-related art-making, workshops, class discussions, or staff-guided tours. Light Work’s community partnerships comprise organizations that cultivate safe spaces for inquiry and critical dialogue and their approaches to both exhibitions and the ideas presented in the works are creative and interdisciplinary.  

2021 Fall Exhibitions

The Fall 2021 exhibition schedule offers a diverse intersection of thematic insights and photographic methods. Please join us for Clifford Prince King: We Used to Lay Together (Kathleen O. Ellis Gallery – Aug. 23-Oct. 14, 2021), Queer Moments: Selections from the Light Work Collection (Hallway Gallery – Aug. 23-Oct. 14, 2021), 2021 Horizons: New Film Out of Central New York (UVP | Everson Plaza – September 30, 2021), and Hito Steyerl: Strike (UVP | Everson Plaza – September 16-December 11, 2021) 

Community Access Photography Lab

Light Work Lab members also have cause for celebration.  In preparation for welcoming the community back into the photography lab, the staff reconfigured the space. We have established new best practices for using state-of-the-art workspaces, darkroom, lighting studio, and printers. The new guidelines ensure a safe,  productive workflow that will support the needs of its members, workshop participants, and artists-in-residence.

Light Work Photography Lab Courtesy of the Julie K. Herman

Gallery and Lab hours are Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Light Work closes on all Syracuse University and federal holidays. Find Light Work in the Robert B. Menschel Media Center at 316 Waverly Avenue, Syracuse, New York, 13224. Limited metered parking is available on Waverly Avenue and paid parking is available in Booth Parking Garage. Visit for information on parking and directions to the galleries. We pledge strict adherence to the most up-to-date COVID-19 safety protocols to protect patrons, artists, students, and staff.  


Light Work thanks Syracuse University and Robert B. Menschel and Vital Projects, as well as the Andy Warhol Foundation, CNY Arts, the Central New York Community Foundation, JGS (Joy of Giving Something Inc.), the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York State Council on the Arts, and the subscribers to Contact Sheet for their dedicated and ongoing support of our programs. Light Work is a member of CMAC, the Coalition of Museum and Art Centers at Syracuse University.