Q&A: Alex Christopher Williams — What Colour is the Air You Breathe


  1. Q. Have you recently been living by any life philosophy?
  2. A. Yeah, I have been trying to live as much in the present moment as I possibly can. I am an overthinker and my mind wanders far and often. If I visit the past to much it brings me depression about a time that I can’t change. If I worry to much about the future, it brings me anxiety. This means having a hyper-sensitive focus on the present moment and being as conscientious about what is going on around me as I can be. Whether it’s making pictures, playing music or anything else I am doing in life, I try to improv and experiment with my path which helps me better control what is in my reach and let go of what is not.
  3. Q. What will baffle future generations about our day and age?
  4. A. That there was ever a time that we communicated, prospered and even lived before the internet.
  5. Q. What is it that interests you about photography?
  6. A. I have been struggling to enjoy photography, and art in general, lately. I struggle to enjoy photography that is just a demonstration of how the medium works but I am also just as cautious to photographs that have become illustrations for concepts larger than the image alone. I go back and forth about what it is that I enjoy about the medium but I know when I see it. I am interested in artists who use photographs as part of their visual lexicon and have robust demonstrations of visual literacy in a body of work. I would say many of my favorite photobooks channel some of the same energies from my favorite records; masterfully executed, dynamic in structure, and somehow a significant contribution to the dialogue of the medium.
  7. Q. What is the worst thing about city life?
  8. A. Paying for parking on public streets is corruption at its finest.
  9. Q. What do you think is the most plausible of the supernatural?
  10. A. The last scene in the first Men in Black movie resonates with me still to this day. Something about galaxy marbles being gambled over by celestial beings seems plausible enough for the ludicrous timeline that we are currently in.
  11. Q. Pick a field of science to be an expert within.
  12. A. Almost certain that the city I live in doesn’t have a civil engineer based on how horribly and unsustainable the city has grown and is growing. In another life I would design cities and they would all be grids… surprise.
  13. Q. What moment have you most wished you’d had a camera when you hadn’t?
  14. A. I enjoy keeping those moments in my memories withering away to become distorted recollections. It’s fun to piece together the puzzle.
  15. Q. Describe the most important photo you’ve seen.
  16. A. The Falling Man is probably the most important. I think it defines the moral and ethical boundaries of journalism. It’s the saddest, most interesting, gut wrenching and coolest photograph I’ve ever seen. The second photograph would be the contact sheet that shows the elevator attendant that Robert Frank photographed. That taught me a lot about how to look.
  17. Q. Describe a personal hell.
  18. A. Driving in the fast lane behind a driver who is doing the speed limit and won’t get over to let you pass.
  19. Q. Which living person do you most admire?
    A. I’ve really enjoyed watching the kid from Akron become the undisputed king of basketball. Dave Chapelle and Louis CK are on that list.
  20. Q. On what occasion do you lie?
  21. A. When my wife asks if I farted, I blame it on one of the cats.
  22. Q. What was the last crime you witnessed?
  23. A. The governor of my state waiting until the week before elections to hand out a $250 tax rebate.
  24. Q. What is the best way to educate yourself?
    A. The comment section on Reddit.
  25. Q. What is the next book you want to read?
  26. A. Decolonizing the Camera: Photographing in Racial Time, Mark Sealy
  27. Q. Ultimate camera?
  28. A. RZ67 Pro ii, 80mm 2.8, Sony sensor in medium format size with a 4×5 crop option in camera.
  29. Q. Most used camera?
  30. A. The one in my hand.
  31. Q. Describe a cheap thrill.
    A. Disagreeing with young people about their political opinion.
  32. Q. Pick a historic moment from the last hundred years to bring a camera to.
  33. A. The assassination of Martin Luther King Jr.
  34. Q. Are impulses more important than consequences?
  35. A. Fuck around and find out, then ask for forgiveness later.


Alex Christopher Williams is a photographer working on long-form projects related to race, masculinity and history. He is the author of Black, Like Paul, a monograph published by Monolith Editions. He received his MFA in Photography from the University of Hartford and is currently a part-time Assistant Photography Professor at Kennesaw State University. He is a 2022 Honoree for the 30 and has shown his work at Silver Eye, the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, The Safe House Black History Museum, Wish Gallery, MINT, whitespec, Con Artist Collective, and C/O Berlin. He is collected at the High Museum, The Do Good Fund, Savannah College of Art and Design and in private collections. He runs a gallery and press called Minor League.

For more information visit — Website / Instagram.