Meet the artists and curator



Fadi BouKaram

Fadi BouKaram was born and raised in Beirut and never wanted to be a photographer. But, after receiving graduate degrees in engineering and business, and a corporate career, he realized how much he needed photography both as a therapeutic tool and as a way to discover oddities within the mundane. In 2013 he and a group of photographers from around the world started the Observe Collective, which was born out of a "common fascination with watching and documenting the diverse humanity that surrounds us." 

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Joe Cory

Joe Cory makes art to help him make sense of the complex world around him. He is especially interested in how artists can use their work to be voices for the oppressed. He witnessed this first hand when in 2013 he traveled to South Africa to participate in Project R5: South Africa co-sponsored by the Lilly Fellows Program for the Humanities and the Arts, and the Nagel Institute at Calvin College (MI). During that project, he learned about the role visual art played in the post-Apartheid reconciliation process. It is an experience he will never forget and one that continues to inspire him and his work. Cory is an Associate Professor of Art at Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama. A native of Des Moines, Iowa, he received his BA from Central College (IA), a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and an MFA from the University of Chicago. He exhibits his work nationally and is the recipient of numerous grants and awards.

Cory would like to give special thanks to Samford University for their generous financial support of this project.

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Matt Schneider

The Rev. Matt Schneider is originally from the San Francisco Bay Area and holds an M.A. in English from San Francisco State University, and an M.Div. from Yale University. After a brief career as a writing teacher, he answered a pastoral calling where he now serves as the Canon for Parish Life and Evangelism at the Cathedral Church of the Advent in downtown Birmingham, Alabama.  He has contributed to a variety of arts and culture related publications including Mockingbird Ministries. Matt is the editor of The Advent magazine, the church's annual arts and theology journal, and he is the host of their Arts + Culture series, which explores creative topics through public conversations.