Archive for the “PRC Exhibitions” Category

Opening Reception: Thursday, December 5, 6-7:30pm

By Kaleigh Rusgrove, PRC Intern

Moira Barrett, “Jan 26, 2012,” 2012/2013 from the series “Regarding Beauty: Notes on Turning 60,” archival inkjet print, Courtesy of the Artist.

For the past five years, the Photographic Resource Center and The Griffin Museum of Photography have organized and run the New England Portfolio Reviews (NEPR). The purpose of NEPR is to provide opportunities for photographers of all skill levels to meet with members of the photographic community. NEPR participants meet with gallerists, curators, educators, and other professionals who are able to provide feedback on the artists work.

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Zach Hoffman, Associate Curator/PRC Spring 2013 Intern

Unconventional Inventions: Innovative, Unusual, and Alternative Approaches to Photography, previously on display at Endicott College’s Carol Grillo Gallery in the Walter J Manninen Center for the Arts as a Photographic Resource Center satellite exhibit, showcases artists working outside the mainstream who integrate creativity with ingenuity to push the boundaries of the photographic medium. After almost four months of dedication and hard work as the Associate Curator, I am pleased to share with you the struggles and successes I encountered as I worked to make this “unconventional” exhibition a reality.

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(Installation view with a glimpse of works by Jesseca Ferguson and Ron Cowie)

As a curator, I spend a lot of time researching ideas for new shows and jotting down ideas for exhibitions as they come to me. “Doors of Perception…” is perhaps a little bit different because I have been thinking about curating a show like this one for many years.

The seed for this show was planted in a workshop at the George Eastman House in Rochester, a few years ago.  Simply titled, “1839,” the workshop, led by photographer and Process Historian Mark Osterman, served as a hands-on introduction to the historic photographic processes from 1839: photogenic drawing, daguerreotype, and Bayard’s process.  A seamless integration of making photographs (in the gardens and darkroom) and viewing photographic objects in the Eastman House’s collection, the workshop was a thorough and rewarding education in historic processes.

At the end of the workshop, I had the chance to see Mark Osterman’s studio, which he shares with his wife, photographer, and teacher, France Scully Osterman.  Having taught so many students historic processes over the years, France had a lot of insight into students and practitioners of alternative processes. During that visit, she said something that really stuck with me.  She said that a lot of people learn alternative processes and think that that’s it; “but you need to have something to say,” she pointed out. In other words, the historical process is not an end in and of itself. It’s only the beginning. To make compelling artwork, one still needs to have something to say. Read the rest of this entry »

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This review of The Space in Between was written during the exhibition’s run at the PRC Gallery (November 15, 2012 – January 19, 2013). The show has now moved to a second venue at the Atlantic Wharf Gallery  downtown as a PRC satellite exhibit. We invite you to visit The Space in Between to experience its new configuration this spring. This satellite exhibition will be on view from January 28 – March 22, 2013. The Atlantic Wharf Gallery at 290 Congress St. is open every day from 7 am – 10 pm.

 

By Jessica Ladd, PRC Fall 2012 Intern

When we think of places like shops and houses, we expect there will also be people to fill them. So what happens when three different photographers decide to challenge this idea? In the most recent exhibit on display at the Photographic Resource Center, photographers Stefanie Klavens, Lynn Saville, and Daniel Feldman showcase work that explores the idea of empty spaces where humans are present without being physically pictured. Through the use of architecturally-focused photography, they have depicted manmade locations that would normally be buzzing with people, but are captured completely empty. Yet, the viewer can sense a human presence just out of reach. Where did everybody go? Why is this location void of the usual hustle and bustle of everyday life?

In her body of work entitled How We Live, Stefanie Klavens has selected spots that would normally be filled with people, but strangely, are completely barren and desolate.These locations range from a bar in Reno to an elegant restaurant and even an abandoned apartment that seem to have been caught in a post-apocalyptic state. Weren’t places like these built so that people could come together and socialize?  Where is the usual crowd? Upon closer inspection, signs of a human presence beings to emerge. Holiday decorations line the walls of an empty bar, while white graffiti stands out against the brick wall of an abandoned building. Vibrant yellow sunflowers and pink Gerber daisies give life to a seemingly empty flower store while cars surround a hotel pool without any swimmers. While these images lack any human beings, they serve as a clear representation of how we as a society live. In a way, they serve as portraits exhibiting the unique lifestyles of people in this day and age. In her artist statement, Klavens states that these “intimate, frozen moments become pieces in a jigsaw puzzle that reflects our culture and how we choose to go about our lives.”

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By Meredith Hoobler, PRC Fall 2012 Intern

Exhibition planning, design, and execution is one of those tasks that simultaneously makes curators want to pull their hair out and jump around like a little girl who just received her first doll. It is complicated yet surprisingly simple, and its success depends on a few very important skills. Over the months I have worked at the Photographic Resource Center, I have been constantly working with Erin Wederbrook Yuskaitis, the Program & Exhibition Manager. Working on so many different projects at the PRC it has been easy for me to pick up the important aspects of exhibition development, through Erin discussing her tasks with me, and my own observations.

Everything fell into place for me personally when I interviewed Erin for a profile article. Sitting down with her at an isolated location away from work really allowed us to converse about her thoughts about the upcoming exhibit, The Space in Between: Daniel Feldman, Stefanie Klavens, and Lynn Saville. This one exhibit taught me in only two short months about approximately a yearlong journey that ends with an opening night.

First and foremost, you need substance. You need to get that spark, light bulb, or flash of an idea, usually triggered by seeing an artist’s work. Once you have the idea, brainstorming steps in. What other artists could pair or complement this one, should it be a solo show, which works are the most influential, powerful, or able to be applied to your theme? This step’s time period is infinite and depends on individual timelines, a boss or department’s deadline, or the organization where the show is to be installed and exhibited. Erin explained the difference in timelines to me based on institution size. Smaller nonprofits such as the PRC have much less time in planning. A year is ideal, but usually the curator and small support staff have under a year to complete the exhibition process. A larger museum typically requires years of planning and research done by a much larger staff of professionals and interns.

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Interview with Alison Nordström
Tuesday, May 15, 2012
By Erin Wederbrook Yuskaitis, PRC Program & Exhibition Manager

I recently had the pleasure of interviewing this year’s EXPOSURE juror, Alison Nordström, over the phone. During a forty-minute conversation, we discussed her role at George Eastman House, where photography is going in the coming decades, and the rise of digital images made by mobile devices.

1. What is your favorite part of working at George Eastman House?

“At George Eastman House I serve as Senior Curator of Photographs and Director of Exhibitions and run a graduate school. Although these are separate jobs, they are inextricably intertwined. In fact, my favorite aspect of working at the Eastman House has to do with the pictures in the collection – studying them in my capacity as curator, showing them to students in my capacity as professor, or organizing them into an exhibition or publication in my capacity as Director of Exhibitions – but my passion always comes back to the objects themselves.”

2. What are some of your upcoming projects at George Eastman House?

“We’ve just opened Untold Stories, a collection survey, in response to the ludicrous situation of having millions of photographs but showing the same 500 or so over and over. This exhibition is about 320 photos broken up into series, or groups of photos, ten to twelve at a time, work we’ve never shown before. Some are recent acquisitions but others have never been shown publically because they were sitting in a box in our archives. Our holdings of Ansel Adams are so broad that we pulled [images] from his earliest portfolios – a nice change from the very familiar Moonrise and Half-Dome. Another big project is our exhibition on Lewis Hine. Eastman House acquired the photographic contents of Hine’s house when he died, some 10,000 objects in total, so we now have 400 objects in an exhibition traveling in Europe [to three different venues]. He’s not as well known in Europe, so we feel we changed the discourse about Hine; people are seeing work of his they never associated with him. We didn’t want to show just child labor or the Empire State Building, we wanted to show those in context with many other Hine photographs.

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The Black Eye by Michal Chelbin, published by Twin Palms Publishers

Recently posted at photo-eye, this review of Chelbin’s body of work subsequent to Strangely Familiar, seen here at the PRC earlier this fall.

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Where was everyone tonight? Dismayed by the rain, I guess. Or was there a Red Sox game? Or has the “new season” already exhausted the appetite for art?

If you weren’t here, you missed some terrific conversations about photographs that have people questioning, wondering about the death of the Soviet sports machine, wondering about childhood as a realm of sexuality, wondering about grown-up faces on adolescent bodies. And some great food, to boot.

Please come on Tuesday, October 19, when Michal will be speaking about her work.

And, next week–Richard Renaldi, Friday September 24. The new photo book. Self-publishing is the wave of the future.

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Just read this blog entry about Steve McCurry, who managed to get the last roll of Kodachrome out of Kodak’s manufacturing. I’m imagining the machines turning off as the film comes off the spool, in the dark. Thanks to Judith H. Dobrzynski for this. Jeff Jacobson, who is on our schedule of exhibitors here in 2011, is also thinking about the last roll, in a metaphoric and personal sense. A long-time user of Kodachrome, Jeff’s “last roll” is a meditation on life both on film and off. Stay tuned for more on that.

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I will never cease to be amazed at how many talented photographers there are in the world. Do you suppose that the numbers are increasing in direct proportion with the number of cameras that are being manufactured? I think that there are visions that are nurtured out of the glare of exposure and expectation, visions that gain power from being focused on a topic and not worrying about who is seeing the results, when and where the work is reaching an audience, how quickly it goes to market.

Our current exhibition at the PRC features four photographers whose work was new to me. Tomasz Tomaszewski, judged the first place winner in the contest organized by SocialDocumentary.net that led to the show (see Mark Feeney’s Boston Globe review here), is perhaps the most accomplished of the group. I tracked down a copy of his massive 2008 book, Rzut Beretem/A Stone’s Throw (published by National Geographic Poland) and acquired it for the PRC Library. (The book is signed by the photographer and inscribed “To H— with my friendship.”) It can easily share the table top with Salgado’s Workers and Nachtwey’s Inferno, at least on the basis of quality of vision; the table top would have to be fairly large and sturdy to handle these three biblo-behemoths.

Tomaszewski’s black-and-white imagery in this book offers an eloquent and evocative tribute to modern Poland’s rural landscape and its accommodations of former agricultural lands and buildings. Some of these environments are in complete decay, others are being reclaimed and rebuilt after decades of post-WWII indifference. Land is again being tilled and grazed, social rituals are being replayed and space is repopulating. But throughout there is a grittiness, a resolute, unshaven quality that lends the emotional landscape an elegiac tone. These Polish spaces may be alive, Tomaszewski implies, but life has shown everyone its tenuous, fleeting nature. There is nothing to take for granted, no saccharine pleasures to absorb thoughtlessly.

When you come in to see the show, be sure to see this book in the library; it complements Tomaszewski’s vibrant work on the walls with a view that is at once deeper, more somber, and more personally rendered. I think that Rzut Beretem/A Stone’s Throw deserves to be ranked among the most accomplished compendia of insider documentary imagery of the last several years.

–George Slade

p.s. The call number for this book is “UT 60 oversize”–which means it’s in the Uncatalogued section (if it’s not still a “New Arrival”). It’s a big black book with no spine title, no dust jacket, and red letters on the cover.

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