Discipline: Film/Video – experimental

Steve Rowell

Discipline: Film/Video – experimental
Region: Minneapolis, MN
MacDowell Fellowships: 2022

Steve Rowell’s work has been exhibited internationally at a range of galleries and museums, including MoMA PS1, LACMA, the MCA in Chicago, and the Haus der Kulturen der Welt in Berlin. The themes he has engaged with in his work include dark money, invisible infrastructure, speculative futures, geologic time, nonhuman intelligence, orbital omniscience, extraction, and extinction. From 2001 to 2013, Steve collaborated with the Los Angeles based Center for Land Use Interpretation on projects covering a spectrum of conceptual terrains. He is a 2013 Creative Capital grantee and 2019 Guggenheim fellow.

During his residency at MacDowell, Steve edited a moving image project called Dead Zones, which was supported, in part, by a 2019 fellowship grant from the Guggenheim Foundation. Dead Zones investigates the aquatic dead zone of the Gulf of Mexico and the terrestrial dead zones of government subsidized corporate farming across the colonized and transformed prairies of the primarily white “American heartland” and the devastating impact on communities of color and fragile ecosystems down the Mississippi River. Photographs from the project were published in the 2022 book Decapitated Economies (K. Verlag, Berlin) alongside an essay written by Priyanka Basu. He also shot and completed three short films that focus on the Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge in Maine as well as the MIT Millstone Hill Geospace Facility and Walden Pond in Massachusetts.

Made at MacDowell

Fellow Works Supported by MacDowell

Dead Zones (film, photographic, essay)



Steve Rowell worked in the Putnam studio.

The Graphics Studio (as it was originally named) was converted to its present use in 1972–1974 through a grant from the Putnam Foundation, and originally served the property as both a power house and pump house. Well water was pumped from a large cistern to Hillcrest, the Foreman’s Cottage, and the lower buildings closer to…

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