AJ Stetson has been photographing since a childhood encounter with a crocodile. He has since created photographs and videos on five continents of Cirque du Soleil performers, dancers, athletes, sea lions, the Milky Way, and more, sharing the miraculousness of the extraordinary and the everyday.
Since recovering from COVID-19 in April, Stetson has been making portraits of masked New Yorkers throughout NYC, using a telephoto lens to remain socially distanced and always asking permission. His goal is to share some of the radiance, diversity, and resilience of his fellow New Yorkers during these challenging times. He hopes that we will continue to strive for justice, health, and empathy toward one another moving forward.
A dual citizen of the U.S. and Italy, Stetson’s Masked NYC project, involving nearly a thousand New Yorkers as of October 21, has been lauded by Governor Andrew Cuomo, featured in the news, and exhibited on the historic fence of the Quaker Meeting House on East 15 Street, and at the Art Gallery at Pace University. It is now on display through January 31 as part of Art on the Avenue NYC along Columbus Avenue and 76 and 77 Streets, and will be hosted in future exhibitions at the Fourth Universalist Society and the Urban Justice Center.