Meet One of the Small Works Project Artists: Alexa Cushing

Alexa Cushing is one of twelve artists selected as a Gallery 263 Small Works Project artist. This project presents artwork in flat files at the gallery and on our website for the duration of one year. All artists are based in Massachusetts. Visit Cushing’s Small Works Project page>>

Can you tell us a little about yourself?

My name is Alexa Cushing and I live in Middleboro, MA. I graduated in 2018 from Massachusetts College of Art and Design with a BFA in photography. I currently work at Panopticon Imaging and Panopticon Gallery in Boston MA.

What kind of art do you make?

I make photographs

What concepts does your art explore?

I think the base of my art practice explores the way people relate and interact with their environment. I am often attracted to landscapes or structures that have been made interesting by the effects of people, weather, or time.

Can you tell us about the work you have on view in your flat file drawer at the gallery?

The photographs in my drawer are a mix of several different projects. I have a few photographs from Seeing is Believing, which was my thesis work at MassArt. I included images from Due West, which is my ongoing project documenting the Los Angeles/southern California area. And lastly, I included a few images from a new body of work that I hope to share more of soon.

Where do you make your work?

I am able to make my work everywhere! I bring my camera with me whenever I’m in the car, constantly observing any interesting light, buildings or objects, or landscapes that catch my attention. I make a majority of my photographs in south eastern Massachusetts and Los Angeles, California.

What are your favorite materials to use? Most unusual?

A majority of my work at the moment is made with my digital camera and printed as archival inkjet prints. I also work with medium and large format cameras, and incorporate these images into my projects as well.

What historical and contemporary artists inspire you?

The first photography project that ever resonated with me was “Summer Nights, Walking” by Robert Adams, which is still my favorite book to this day. I also admire the photography of Gregory Halpern, Todd Hido, and Alec Soth. Additionally, I am influenced by the writing of Joan Didion and Raymond Carver.

When did you decide you wanted to be an artist?

I can’t remember a time where I wasn’t interested in art! I have been drawing and painting my entire life, and became more interested in photography as a teenager. Looking back on the illustrations I would create and comparing them to my photographs now, I’ve realized that I have been subconsciously exploring very similar ideas throughout all of my art making.

Is there anything else you would like to share?

I have recently been able to try my hand at curating , which is something I’m really excited about. I had the opportunity to curate First Look 2022 at Panopticon Gallery, which opened February 3rd. It was really great to be able to take a look at hundreds of submissions, and share the work of artists that I think need to be seen!

My work can be seen at or on Instagram at @alexacushing.