Adrian L. Burrell is a multidisciplinary storyteller who uses film and photography to inspire change and conversation about issues of race, class, gender, violence and intergenerational dynamics.
Adrian was born and raised in Oakland, California, where his family has lived since 1927. His ongoing project Mama’s Babies explores his own family who relocated from Jim Crow Louisiana to Oakland CA. He works with Archival images, video and photographs to share this personal story.
Adrian has produced, directed and shot numerous documentaries, music videos and narrative films. He worked in camera and production rolls for NBCUniversal. Adrian produced and served as casting director for Licks, a feature-length film that debuted at SXSW in 2013.
As the director and producer of the documentary series Picture A Change, Adrian led a crew of filmmakers from Mississippi to Brazil, India, South Africa and Senegal to document women-led grassroots organizations.
Adrian holds a BFA in Film from the San Francisco Art Institute, and is currently working on an MFA Stanford University’s Documentary Film and Video program. He is a Marine Corps veteran and speaks Portuguese. He has lived and worked in Asia, Africa, Latin America, and the Middle East. In his spare time, you can find Adrian dancing or recording his grandmother’s stories.
Awards / Exhibitions

Jurors' Choice Award

Forecast 2019: SF Camerawork Annual Survey Exhibition

San Francisco, California - 2019

Each year SF Camerawork invites an esteemed jury to curate its annual survey exhibition This year’s jurors Beryl Bevilacque (Artist Liaison, Jessica Silverman Gallery), Samantha Cooper (Photo Editor, Wired Magazine), and Erica Deeman (Artist) selected the work of 13 photographers from over 200 entries. This year, SF Camerawork presented the Juror’s Choice Award to Adrian Burrell. His series Mama’s Babies traces his family’s history through slavery, the Great Migration, the crack era, and the current displacement of Black people in Oakland through gentrification.

"Mama’s Babies" - Solo photo Exhibition at the 1090 Gallery

San Francisco, California - 2019

"UnBound” - Group show at Candela+ Gallery

Richmond, Virginia - 2019

"Into The World”- Group show curated at Diego Rivera Gallery by Linda Connor

San Francisco, California - 2018

John Collier Award
San Francisco, California - 

The John Collier Award, endowed by Collier and his wife, Mary, recognizes photographers whose work addresses issues of anthropological and social significance. John Collier was a professor at the San Francisco Art Institute since the 1960s. This exhibition features photographers who have followed the documentary tradition.

"Home Show" - Runner Up

San Francisco, California - 2018

SFO Museum and PhotoAlliance held a photographic competition juried by distinguished professionals. 14 Winning works were exhibited at the SFO Museum and 33 Runner-up works were featured on the website and Facebook page garnering international viewing. All winning & runner-up entries were screened before a public PhotoAlliance lecture event in San Francisco.

Diego Rivera Gallery, SFAI BFA Exhibition

San Francisco, California - 2017

"Remembering a Life Film Contest"

Salt Lake City, Nevada - 2018

The National Funeral Director's Association 2018 International Convention & Expo in Salt Lake City, Utah drew 4,029 total attendees, representing 29 countries and territories. NFDA invited filmmakers from around the world to submit films that help convey the importance and power of memorializing lives. Three winning films were selected, the second-place film being "Tio Lino" by Adrian Burrell. It follows the life of a man in Brazil who chose to devote his time and talents to serving the disadvantaged youth in his community.

Adrian Burrell, Storyteller
2600 Tenth Street, Suite 622, Berkeley, CA 94710
Tel: +1 760 331-7100     |
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