In 2010 Chicago-based artist Jason Lazarus initiated a growing archive of photos deemed “too hard to keep.” Too Hard to Keep is a place for photographs, photo-objects, and even digital files to exist when they are too difficult to hold on to, yet too meaningful to destroy. Participants have dictated whether the photographs submitted to the archive may be shown freely with other pieces of the archive, or if they are only to be displayed face down, adding to the charged significance of each object. Out of this expanding collection site-specific installations occur. With Too Hard to Keep (Syracuse) Lazarus shares a slice of the larger archive alongside anonymous local submissions in a carefully considered installation at Light Work.
This catalogue includes an interview with Jason Lazarus by Shane Lavalette.
Jason Lazarus is a Chicago-based artist, curator, writer, and educator who received his MFA in Photography from Columbia College Chicago in 2003. Lazarus has actively exhibited around the country and abroad while teaching photography at Columbia College and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Selected exhibition highlights include Black Is, Black Aint at the Renaissance Society, Chicago, IL; Image Search at PPOW Gallery, New York, NY; On the Scene at the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL; and solo exhibitions at Andrew Rafacz Gallery, Chicago, IL; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL; Kaune, Sudendorf, Cologne, Germany; and D3 Projects, Los Angeles, CA. Notable honors include the John Gutmann Photography Fellowship, 2010; an Illinois Arts Council Fellowship award, 2009; the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Award, Emerging Artist, 2008; and the Emerging Artist Artadia Grant, 2006. His work can be found in the collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, the Milwaukee Museum of Art, and the Bank of America LaSalle Photography collection, among many others. Lazarus is represented by Andrew Rafacz Gallery, Chicago, IL.