Frederking has photographed Columbia College Dance Center performances and artists extensively over the years. The prints on display in this exhibit are all of dancers with a close connection to the Dance Center, either former or current teachers or alumni.
“I have been photographing dance in Chicago since 1990,” says Frederking. “In 2013, I began photographing dancers in the black box studio at Links Hall as a photographic residency. Links Hall donated the space for several Sundays each month for nearly a year, and I made movement portraits of professional dancers who signed up for sessions of 2-3 hours. The movement is improvised and . . . I document the movement. This is very similar to the way I photograph live dance performance on stage, except I use my electronic flash to light the scene and capture the movement. In 2014 the American Rhythm Center provided a similar residency and I began working with tap and hip-hop dancers as well as continuing to work [with] other types of dancers. In addition to creating an archive of my dance images from the 1990s and beyond, I hope to continue this project of photographing contemporary professional dancers after my retirement from Columbia College Chicago at the end of May 2017.”
Frederking joined Columbia College in 1983 as a teacher in the Photography Department. In 2008 to 2012, he served as Associate Dean of the School of Fine and Performing Arts under Dean Eliza Nichols. In 2015, he returned to the School of Fine and Performing Arts as Interim Associate Dean under Dean Onye Ozuzu, former chair of the Columbia College Dance Center.