Visual Arts alumnx Collette Fournier (’03) has had a truly expansive and successful career as a photographer and photojournalist. In addition to receiving her MFA in Visual Art from VCFA, Fournier has worked as a staff photographer for The Rockland Journal-News and The Bergen Record, freelanced for The New York Post, worked in the television industry, and has her photography exhibited across the country.
In her latest photography exhibition, Fournier will show her work, “Taking the Struggle to the Streets: Community Activism,” in a virtual exhibition at the Arts Council of Rockland (ACOR) from October to November 2020. “Taking the Struggle to the Streets: Community Activism” is a career-spanning collection that features Fournier’s photography across decades—from her work in 2007 surrounding Hurricane Katrina to archive photography from the 1997 Million Woman March.
At the heart of the collection is one theme: the struggle Fournier has seen for civil and human rights throughout her life and today in 2020.
“As an African American woman fighting for civil rights and for human rights, I’ve always been inspired to photograph rallies, marches, and demonstrations that highlight these causes,” says Fournier. “I’ve been active since the Vietnam War was going on when I was in high school.”
By showing her collection in 2020, Fournier hopes “Taking the Struggle to the Streets: Community Activism” will show her interest in community activism in such a vital time.
“It is a generation away from many causes that I fought for, and with Black Lives Matter and civil rights on the forefront and having many photographs in my archives, it was important to show these images and more current photography that I’ve photographed,” says Fournier.
You can view “Taking the Struggle to the Streets: Community Activism” at artscouncilofrockland.org. To see more from Fournier and to view her current exhibition calendar, you can support her work at collettefournierphotography.com.
Samples from the Collection
New Orleans, LA | Post Hurricane Katrina, 2007
Leah Hodges, a community activist with Common Cause, talks on the phone to a client.
“Die-In” Rockland CC
Suffern, NY | Die-In for Kimani Gray, 2013
Willie Trotman, President of NAACP Spring Valley, NY, and Ken Mercer at Die-in on RCC’s campus.
I Am One in a Million
Philadelphia, PA | Million Women March, October 1997
Hundreds of thousands of women and men march for civil rights and working rights during the Million Women March in Philadelphia, PA.