Twenty-Five Years of First Exposures

Terminal 3

Arrivals—Level 1
Oct 25, 2018 - Feb 14, 2019

First Exposures 01First Exposure 02First Exposure 03
Twenty-Five Years of First Exposures

Founded in 1993, San Francisco-based First Exposures is a nationally recognized youth mentoring program that strives to make a long-term difference in the lives of high-need, underserved young people residing in the San Francisco Bay Area. First Exposures serves youth ages eleven through eighteen who are referred to the program by a wide range of youth and social services organizations, and provides a venue for them to enhance self-confidence, develop creativity, and gain a passion for learning.

Since the early 1990s, over five-hundred young artists have participated in the program and the overwhelming majority of participants have continued to pursue higher education. During the early years of the program, First Exposures’ curriculum was rooted in traditional analog photo processes and students worked with film cameras and in darkrooms. In 2009, they added digital photography to their programming and doubled the number of artists they were able to serve. In 2014, First Exposures began offering summer programming, again dramatically increasing their capacity to work with students. In celebration of the organization’s twenty-fifth anniversary, this exhibition brings together a diverse range of photographs that represent the trajectory of the program and the talent of its students through the years.

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