In Focus: Widline Cadet’s Los Angeles

The artist, who has a solo presentation in this year’s Focus section, discusses LA landscapes and her work inspired by Haitian myth, childhood memories and the invisible

in Frieze Los Angeles , Interviews , Videos | 01 FEB 24
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A highlight of this year’s Focus section for emerging art at Frieze Los Angeles is LA-based, Haiti-born artist Widline Cadet, who features in a solo presentation from Shulamit Nazarian.

The photographer explores her intimate relationship to the city, revealing that even when she was based in New York she would travel to Los Angeles to shoot—with the city’s scintillating light, its colors, plantlife and architecture all reminding her of her native Haiti.

Cadet’s work explores memory and erasure within diasporic experience, with self-portraits (with others performing as Cadet’s double), portraits of family members, still lifes and landscapes that create a dreamy world poised somewhere between Cadet’s memories of a former life and her Haitian cultural identity within the US. She talks of her work as a space “where impossible meetings can happen.”

black and white photograph of Black women interlocking arms, from behind
Widline Cadet, Pou kouri dèyè syèl la (To Chase the Sky), 2023. Archival inkjet print. 50.8 × 40.6 cm. Courtesy of the artist and Shulamit Nazarian, Los Angeles


About Widline Cadet

Widline Cadet is a visual artist born in Pétion-Ville, Ayiti, Haiti and currently based in the United States. Her practice is rooted in photography and includes video, sound, sculpture, performance and installation. 

Cadet earned her BA in studio art from the City College of New York and an MFA from Syracuse University. She was a recipient of a 2013 Mortimer-Hays Brandeis Traveling Fellowship, a 2018 Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture artist in residence, a 2019 Lighthouse Works fellow, a 2019 Syracuse University VPA Turner artist in residence, a 2020 Lit List finalist, the 2020 Museum of Contemporary Photography’s Snider Prize winner, a recipient of a 2020 NYFA / JGS Fellowship in photography, a 2020-21 artist in residence at The Studio Museum in Harlem, and a 2021-2022 visual arts fellow at The Fine Arts Work Center. Her work has featured in ApertureFOAM, The New Yorker, TIME Magazine, The New York Times Magazine, The Financial Times and Wallpaper*, among others. Her work is held in public and private collections including those of The Whitney Museum of American Art, The Museum of Contemporary Photography, The Huis Marseille, The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), The Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM), The Milwaukee Art Museum and The Princeton University Art Museum.

Cadet lives and works in Los Angeles, where she is Visiting Assistant Professor of Photography at UCLA.

Further Information

Frieze Los Angeles is at Santa Monica Airport, February 29–March 3, 2024.

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