electronic mail (at) gmail (dot) com

Instagram: @jessely

please get in touch for commissions, shoots, workshops, exhibition opportunities, collaborations, print inquiries or just to say hi!

Spelled Ly // Pronounced Lee

Jesse Ly is an Asian-American photographic and image-based artist. They hold a bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts with a minor in Art History and a certificate in Critical Visions from the University of Cincinnati’s college of DAAP. They currently are the Graphic Design and Photography Media Facilities Coordinator for Art & Design at the University of Dayton.

Ly uses photographic approaches that incorporates processes of sculpture, bookmaking, and writing to inform and expand imagery. Their work navigates identity structures through representation and comprehension by considering the transitional qualities of existence found within imagery and their adornments. They use this mode of looking to examine how photographic depictions incite differentiation in presence and portrayal through presented context and actuality.

These concerns surface typically via self-analyzation, fixating on how Ly, those they have immediate discursive relationships with, their inhabited spaces, and objects of interaction exists through, with, and as photographic imagery. This is done to further dialogs of relationships of image-making, existence, and conceptual formulations through the sequencing, intervening, and examination of their compositions. This allots for a further inquiry of physical, ethereal and psychological spaces to become recontextualized through the perceptions, futilities, liminal spaces, and notions imagery creates.

They have exhibited work both nationally across the United States and internationally. A selection of solo and two person exhibitions include Image Interference at Basketshop Gallery - Cincinnati, OH, Support Systems at SHAG (Stone House Art Gallery) Charlotte, NC and please remember this... at The Neon Heater - Findlay, OH. Notable group exhibitions include Wild Frictions The Politics and Poetics of Interruption at The Contemporary Arts Center Cincinnati, Auto//Update at the Carnegie Arts Center - Covington, KY, and I Don’t Know How To Respond To That at the PhMuseum - Bologna, Italy. They are a recipient of two Culture Works Artist Opportunity Grants, an Individual Excellence Award from the Ohio Arts Council, a Regional Artist Renewal Grant via the National Endowment for the Arts, and was recently named a finalist for the Aperture Portfolio Prize for 2023.

Ly has also worked collaboratively as a member of Hot Take Press, producing publications to expand the possibilities of exhibition through print with other artists at institutions including: The Carnegie Arts Center (Covington, KY), The George Eastman Museum (Rochester, NY), Beeler Gallery at CCAD (Columbus, OH) the Geffen at MOCA (Los Angeles, CA) Denny Dimin Gallery (New York, NY) and Printed Matter.

2020 - University of Cincinnati, College of Design, Architecture, Art & Planning
Bachelors in Fine Arts, minor in Art History, & certificate in Critical Visions
Magna Cum Laude


Playing Well Together - Riffe Gallery - Columbus, OH

TBA - Foster Gallery at Noble and Greenough School - Bedham, MA *

On Location & Care - Index Gallery at University of Dayton, Dayton, OH 
(Curatorial Project)

As It Was Meant To Be Told - Studio San Guiseppe Gallery at Mount St. Joseph University Campus - Cincinnati, OH

Memory Fields - Alice F. and Harris K. Weston Gallery - Cincinnati, OH

take time, try - The Weather Station - Lafayette, IN *

ACRE - Artist in Residence

Solo* & Two Person**  Exhibitions

try, take time - The Blue House Arts - Dayton, OH *

please remember this... - The Neon Heater - Findlay, OH *

Support Systems  - SHAG (Stone House Art Gallery) - Charlotte, NC **
(w/ Aubrey Theobald)

I witness, I Observe, I am not, I am. - Capsule Gallery - Dayton, OH *

Image Interference. - Basketshop Gallery - Cincinnati, OH *

Dear, Sincerely, - Aviary Gallery - Jamaica Plain, MA *

Not A Real Person. - The 840 Gallery - Cincinnati, OH *

Select Group Exhibitions

Analog Only Clvb : No Digitals Allowed! - OKO Studio - Dayton, OH

30th Open Members - The Contemporary Dayton (The Co) - Dayton, OH

Get Together - Roger Glass Center for the Arts at University of Dayton - Dayton, OH

imageOhio - Roy G Biv Gallery - Columbus, OH

I Don’t Know How To Respond To That - PhMuseum - Bologna, Italy

Monuments to Unknown Heroes - Contemporary Arts Center - Cincinnati, OH

Alternatives Biennial: Image as Object - Ohio University Art Gallery - Athens, OH

Goodbye Summer - Float Photo Magazine

Photography & Tenderness - Wave Pool Art Center - Cincinnati, OH

Home Ave Fund - Absorb Gallery - Dayton, OH

A&D22 - Radial Gallery at University of Dayton - Dayton, OH

Hibernacula (w/Floodcraft) - EDU gallery - Dayton, OH

On Belonging - Third Space Gallery - Cincinnati, OH

Hold-Release - Artfare

Fill Your Cup - Too Tired Project

In Regards to Nostalgia -
Ruth G. Pearlman Gallery at Art Academy of Cincinnati- Cincinnati, OH
(three person exhibition with Aubrey Theobald & Mark Albain)

Safe Travels - Study Hall Gallery at PrattMWP College of Art and Design - Utica, NY

Notions of Home - Lucie Foundation

a labor of love - Soft Lighting Studios

Lions, Tigers, and Sustainability, OH MY - The Red Door Project - Cincinnati, OH

Wild Frictions The Politics and Poetics of Interruption - Contemporary Arts Center - Cincinnati, OH

winter - Esperanza Project Space

The 2020 Favorite Photo Exhibition - Lenscratch

Janus - Darkside Collective

Full House - Localhost Gallery

DAAPworks 2020 - Cincinnati, OH

Liminal - Cumulus Photo

20Emerging - Gallery Q at the Out Alliance – Rochester, NY

An Art Book Affair (w/ Hot Take Press) - Beeler Gallery - Columbus, OH

Make Me Love You In 10 Jpgs Or Less - Skylab Gallery - Columbus, OH

Home-Body - Tabula Rasa Gallery - Cincinnati, OH

Fresh Looks 2020 - Eastern Michigan University Galleries - Ypsilanti, MI

Cincinnati Art Book Fair (w/ Hot Take Press) - The Carnegie Arts Center – Covington, KY

¯_(ツ)_/¯ - The Waiting Room Gallery – Cincinnati, OH

The 2019 Dog Exhibition - Lenscratch

About Future - Millepiani - Rome, Italy

An Unclear View - Indie Grits Labs - Columbia, SC

FotoFocus Auto//Update - The Carnegie Arts Center - Covington, KY.

AD 2019: Cincinnati Edition - Anytime Department - Cincinnati, OH

The Pivotal ImageCumulus Photo

hYbRiD iNtErFeReNcE -  XTUD1O at The Warehouse Studios. - Cincinnati, OH

Printed Matter L.A. Art Book FairThe Geffen at MOCA, (w/ Hot Take Press) - Los Angeles, CA

Re-Definition - The 840 Gallery-  Cincinnati, OH 2018

Cincinnati Art Book Fair (w/ Hot Take Press) - The Carnegie Arts Center - Covington, KY.

Power Moves - Victory Parkway Galleries - Cincinnati, OH

Objectif Obscura - The 840 Gallery - Cincinnati, OH

Taking Stock - The 840 Gallery - Cincinnati, OH

Sights & Sounds II - Glendora House - Cincinnati, OH

Not Porn - The 840 Gallery - Cincinnati, OH

Urban Tapestry - 1628LTD - Cincinnati, OH

Sights & Sounds - Glendora House - Cincinnati, OH

Rocky’s Reels Video Art Show - DAAP Galleries - Cincinnati, OH

International Sculpture Day Art Show - Pyramid Hill Sculpture Park - Hamilton, OH

At Capacity Art Show - The 840 Gallery - Cincinnati, OH

Awards & Activities

John Lombard Prize for Best in Show - The Contemporary Dayton (The Co)

Artist Opportunity Grant - Montgomery Country Arts and Culture District & Culture Works

Aperture Portfolio Prize Finalist

Individual Excellence Award - Ohio Arts Council

Dayton Region Arts Renewal Grant - National Endowment for the Arts & Culture Works

Artist Opportunity GrantMontgomery Country Arts and Culture District & Culture Works

Nikon Storytellers Scholarship Semifinalist

Franklin Palmer & Marjorie Stewart Palmer Scholarship -  University of Cincinnati

Select Publications/Bibliography

In Conversation - Transference Mag ( interview with Adrian Jing Song )

The Garden of Dreams - Black Flower Publishing

Pictures & Songs - booooooom

Wave Pool Art Center - Photography & Tenderness

The Third Rail Quarterly - Issue 14

a labor of love - Soft Lighting Studios

2020 All Stars - Fotofika

Potluck: Identity As. - A CVSN Anthology

Now What? Thoughts On Photography – Lenscratch

A Matter of Being – Quiet Pages Press – Philadelphia, PA.

Let’s Get Weird Volume 2. - PZA Club at UC DAAP

Disconnect - risograph print, perfect bound edition of 50 (Independent, published w./ Hot Take Press)

Select Press

2022 - Dayton Region Arts Renewal Grant
Fotofocus - Photography & Tenderness
Cincinnati People - On Belonging
Artswave - On Belonging 

ilikethis art - In Regards to Nostalgia
Undermain - In Regards to Nostalgia
Art Forum - Wild Frictions
e-flux - Wild Frictions

2020 - II
Artswave - II
Basketshop Gallery - FotoFocus - II
FotoFocus - Light &

FotoFocus - Auto//Update
Printed Matter - LA Art Book Fair

Select Professional Experience 

2021 - Present
Graphic Design & Photography Media Facilities Coordinator - University of Dayton

2018- 2021
Design & Production Crew - Hot Take Press <3

Visiting Artist Critiquer - Senior Pathways - Art Academy of Cincinnati

Studio Photographer - Cowans/Hindman Auctions

Studio & Teaching Assistant - Laura Letinsky - University of Chicago

Photo & Print Lab Technician - University of Cincinnati DAAP

HOT TAKE PRESS (2017-2021)

Hot Take Press was a collaborative risograph book-press based out of Cincinnati, OH. The press was run by five emerging artists, centered on artist-books and print editions. All members contributed equally to the design, production, and distribution of the editions. (Bri Hicks, Hannah Brown, Luke Kindle, Aubrey Theobald & Jesse Ly)

Collection, Bad Conez, New York Public Library, 10 x 10 Photo Books (New York City, NY)

Publication,  Dear, Sincerely, - Inkjet and Laser Print, Edition of 30 (Cincinnati, OH)

Limited Press, PRINTED MATTER, HTP Feature for LAABF (Los Angeles, CA)

Limited Press, Jordan Tate for Denny Gallery: Pictureesque Snot: Polemics of the the Landscape (New York City, NY)

Limited Press, Jordan Tate for PMLAABF: Pictureesque Snot: Polemics of the the Landscape (Los Angeles, CA)

Limited Press, Mark Albain for PMLAABF: Oh, to see without my eyes, for Hot Take Press (Los Angeles, CA)

Limited Press, Carmen Winant for CAVE: WAR, Poster Editions, Carmen Winant for HTP (Detroit, MI)

Limited Press, Archive As Action, Exhibition Catalogue, HTP for the Contemporary Arts Center (Cincinnati, OH)

Workshop, Risograph & Book Making Workshop, Out Alliance, HTP for George Eastman Museum (Rochester, NY)

Limited Press, Dear Jeff, for Nate Larson, Marni Shindelman, & Out Alliance - George Eastman Museum (Rochester, NY)

Limited Press, Bad Conez, Aubrey Theobald for HTP (Cincinnati, OH)

Publication, Disconnect, Jesse Ly for HTP (Cincinnati, OH)

Limited Press, The Intersection of Spaces, Hannah Brown for HTP (Cincinnati, OH)

Limited Press, HTP Poster Series, Sophie Danin, Jesse Ly, Aubrey Theobald, Mark Albain, & Bri Hicks

Publication, Year Book I, Hot Take Press (Cincinnati, OH)