Growing up as a child in the internet age, Grace Pham became acutely aware that she had a generic name (Vietnam only has about 7 different surnames). Other Grace Phams around the world were lawyers, doctors, import car models, wedding photographers, etc. Grace did not have an "American middle name" and could not pronounce the Vietnamese name her parents made up for her ("Song-Thuong," which roughly translates as "double-love," which her parents intended to mean that they both love her, but she makes fun of them by translating it as "bisexual." Also, her Vietnamese friends make fun of her, saying it's the equivalent of a hick/country bumpkin name). So, she went with the least offensive name that started with an "S," which is how the Grace Sydney Pham personal rebranding crusade began.
Grace started taking photos in February of 2017 to cope with anxiety and situational depression. She mostly focuses on self portraiture and still life photography.
Grace is a self-taught photographer and installation artist who translates figurative and idiomatic language into visual and tactical works, a means of escapism from the anxieties and stressors entailed by being a female Asian American physician-scientist in training. She explores the themes of reproductive freedom and biotechnology, distortions of conventional gender roles, youth and vanity, and Asian fetishization while simultaneously being “othered” in contemporary America. Grace achieves the transmogrification of past trauma into surreal, escapist fantasy with the use of a consistent pastel color palette, apparel and props sourced from thrift and dollar stores, and self-portraits that alternate between obscuring her face and baring nearly all, while avoiding the use of explicit nudity or deliberate sexuality. Her two greatest influences are Cindy Sherman and horror cinema.
Grace Sydney Pham is a member of 500X Gallery in Dallas, Texas.