Raised in the hill country of northwest Arkansas, Deborah Luster studied literature and creative writing at the University of Arkansas. Her work is included in the permanent collections of the Whitney Museum of America Art; The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, The Smithsonian Museum and the New Orleans Museum of Art, among others. Her awards include the Dorothea Lange-Paul Taylor Prize from the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University (with C.D. Wright); the first Baum Award for An Emerging American Photographer (in conjunction with the Friends of Photography); a John Gutmann Photography Fellowship; a Peter S. Reed Fellowship; and an Anonymous Was A Woman Award. Luster has published two monographs, both with Twin Palms Publishing, One Big Self: Prisoners of Louisiana (2003), and Tooth for an Eye: A Chorography of Violence in Orleans Parish (2011). She now lives in New Orleans, Louisiana.


2012 Send It On Down, Arthur Roger Gallery, New Orleans, LA
2011 Tooth for an Eye, Jack Shainman Gallery, New York, NY
2009 Invisible Populations: Photographs by Deborah Luster, LSU School of Art, Glassell Gallery, Shaw Center for the Arts, Baton Rouge, LA
2008 Tooth for an Eye, Prospect.1 International Biennial, New Orleans, LA
2007 One Big Self, Newcomb Art Gallery, Woldenberg Art Center, Tulane University, New Orleans, LA
2006 On the Inside, The Halsey Gallery, College of Charleston, SC
2005 One Big Self, The Bell Gallery, Brown University, Providence, RI
One Big Self, Winthrop University Gallery, Rock Hill, SC
2004 One Big Self, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, CA
One Big Self, Jack Shainman Gallery, New York, NY
2003 One Big Self, Blue Sky Gallery, Portland, OR
2002 One Big Self, Galveston Arts Center, Galveston, TX
1999 Come Shining: The Spiritual South, The Light Factory, Charlotte, NC
1994 The Lost Roads Project, The Old State House, Little Rock, AR


2013 Decisive Moments, Honolulu Museum of Art, Honolulu, HI
2012 Cruel and Unusual, Noorderlicht Gallery, Groningen, Netherlands
Cruel and Unusual, Photoville Festival, New York, NY
Something Here from Somewhere Else, Good Children Gallery, New Orleans, LA
Groundstory, Dalton Gallery, Agnes Scott College, Atlanta, GA
2011 Crime Unseen, Museum of Contemporary Photography, Columbia College, Chicago, IL
The World According to New Orleans, Ballroom, Marfa, TX
2010 Prospect 1.5, New Orleans, LA
Crime Scene NOLA, Antenna Gallery, New Orleans, LA
Residents and Visitors: Twentieth Century Photographs of Louisiana, New Orleans Museum of Art, New Orleans, LA
2007 A Course in Minerals, collaboration with Kevin Sullivan, KK Projects, New Orleans, LA
2005 Hand and Eye: The Dorothea Lange—Paul Taylor Award Recipient’s Exhibition, Center for Documentary Studies, Duke University, Durham, NC
Casting a New Light, 1708 Gallery, Richmond, VA
2004 Inside Out: Portrait Photographs from the Permanent Collection, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY
Common Ground, Selections from the Collection of Julia J. Norrell, Corcoran Museum of Art, Washington, D.C.
Male Body Image, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT
A Charge to Keep, Jack Shainman Gallery, New York, NY
Southern Images, Contemporary Photographers, Kathleen Ewing Gallery, Washington, D.C.
2002 No Exit: Images of Imprisonment, SF Camerawork, San Francisco, CA
Contemporary Alternative Photography, The White Room Gallery, West Hollywood, CA
20th Anniversary Exhibition, Houston Center for Photography (FOTOFest), Houston, TX
The Camera Obscured IV: Mixed Media Photography, Catherine Edelman Gallery, Chicago, IL
2001 Many Moons, Hammond Museum, North Salem, NY
The Crafted Image, Boston University, Boston, MA
Visualizing the Blues, The Dixon Gallery and Gardens, Memphis, TN
1999 Myth, Memory and Imagination, The Julia J. Norrell Collection, The McKissick Museum, Columbia, SC
Carried to the Heart: Faith and Doubt in Contemporary Southern Art and Literature, Millsaps College, Jackson, MS
Humidity, Jackson Fine Art, Atlanta, GA
Home Altars, Sacred Space in the Domestic Realm, John Michael Kohler Center, Sheboygan, WI
Not for Profit, Soho Photo, New York, NY
1998 Send It On Down, The Light Factory, Charlotte, NC
1997 Come Shining, Poets Theatre, New York, NY
1996 Discoveries at the Meeting Place, Fotofest, Houston, TX
The American South: Contemporary Photography from 1966—1996, Catherine Edelman Gallery, Chicago, IL
New Southern Photography, The Society for Contemporary Photography, Kansas City, MO
Water, Photo Metro, San Francisco, CA
Tangle of Complexes: Photographing in Mexico, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO
1995 Deborah Luster and William Griner, Blue Sky Gallery, Portland, OR
Gallery Artists: Part I, Catherine Edelman, Chicago, IL
Blue Sky’s 20th Anniversary Show, Blue Sky Gallery, Portland, OR
1994 Bi Location, Oaxaca, Mexico
Send it on Down, The Light Factory, Charlotte, NC