December 7, 2011
I am pre-selling my first monograph through Kickstarter: Singular Beauty (Summer 2012) The book is being designed and published by Hans Gremmen, co-founder of Fw:, a platform for Dutch Contemporary Photography.
If you pre-buy the book through Kickstarter (for a pledge of $45 +) you will receive your book delivered before it is available to the general public. And every single person who supports Singular Beauty will have their name listed in the final publication. Read more about other rewards and the book on my project page.
Kickstarter is an ALL or NOTHING funding model and I only have until Jan. 20th, 2012 too make a big goal. I know things are tough out there for a lot of us, so whether you can spare $1, $5, $25, $45 or $500, every pledge helps! There are rewards for every amount.
GET YOUR COPY NOW
If you feel comfortable, please share this link with anyone you think might be interested.
July 8, 2010
Hello everyone I have been on an extended blog hiatus. I am going to keep GG up as an archive, and perhaps when I have the time and inclination will return. Thank you all for your support and for reading!
August 8, 2009
It was funny for me to read Joerg Colberg’s recent post on blogs, I myself have had a half-hearted post about the state of blogs lingering as an unfinished draft for some time. But not surprisingly with my current life, I never got around to posting it. My general feeling about photo blogs has been a bit negative lately–that is not against other people’s blogs, but towards the overly insular and self-contained universe that it created. While I think some incredible things came out of it, and I have made some real friendships, ultimately it was not satisfying the true need I had to be more engaged in the photo process with my peers. In fact, it started to feel like an impediment to my own creative process. The amount of energy and time that was going into Ground Glass, was sucking me a little dry–leaving very little time or energy to make pictures.
However after my recent experience of having a meaningful, engaged dialog with my peers in person, I left re-energized and brimming with ideas. In a way, not blogging has helped me finally really edit of my Singular Beauty work, it gave me time to finish my book and actually start sending out my mock-up, and it gave me time to make room for a new project. So as much as I loved blogging, I realized for me right now, I had to choose. And paying my bills and my own photo work has to come first. Followed by Women in Photography. There is not a whole lot left over after that. I wish I could be super woman, but sadly I am not.
But at the Young Curators New Ideas, II opening, I got into a conversation with two woman who are still actively blogging. I will admit I was a bit negative about the entire “blogoshpere,” but the next day I got a google alert and went to PalmAire, (WIPNYC artist) Tema Stauffer’s blog and realized that is it me that is currently experiencing blog exhaustion. Both Tema, and Tethered’s, Elizabeth Fleming, have really engaging, personal and intelligent posts. And other blog’s, like Horses Think, and Nina Corvallo’s blog, and others, have continued to be really great reads. I think at the heart of the blog, is the personal voice. For me, blogs that stay like personal online diaries, and have an certain intimacy and that focus on sharing information about a subject they truly love, work best. When blogs move into the professional media territory, they start to lose a bit of soul.
Once blogs become “professionalized,” to me they are less interesting. The internet is the great equalizer, it is a place where major news organizations compete with small individuals for market share and audience. Something that was impossible when you had to pay to publishing costs. So I understand the temptation to step up your game, but there are so many blogs now from the mainstream press, why not keep the individual blog more personal and less concerned with blog stats. Unless you want to become a mainstream media outlet, with advertising etc. Which, by the way, I am not against.
Yet blogs like PalmAire and Horses Think, remind of what a valuable part of the photo community a blog can be–and perhaps now that my first solo show is close to being completely framed and delivered to the gallery, I will again be drawn back to share some of the amazing things that have happened in the last few months. But until then, there are a lot of wonderful voices out there, you just need to find the ones you care enough to listen to.
July 21, 2009
While I know I have been not blogging very much the last 3 or 4 months, I have been immersed in my own work, in Women in Photography and in my day job. While I miss you all very much and the blog community, I have had so many great things happening I have decided to be ok with letting the blog go a bit until I can redefine its next incarnation.
But just so you know how I am spending my time here are two of the things I am happily immersed in. More soon on my own work….
The loss of Polaroid has been pretty devastating to many photographers, it has had a big effect on my UV work, and I am still trying to figure out how to do it without type 54 or 55. So when they said they were doing a piece on the loss of Polaroid at work, I was immediately excited to do something.
We put together an online gallery of the incredibly varied work made by photographer’s who use the instant film. And we asked them to tell us why they chose to work with Polaroid or what made it special. This meant that I got to speak to Chuck Close and David Levinthal about working with the 20×24 camera and email with Philp Lorca di Corcia. Suffice to say, it was a fantastic experience. You can see the gallery and read the quotes now on newsweek.com.
And today a new WIPNYC show went up with Lynne Cohen. She has a new book out of all her color work, which is fantastic. This show is personally very exciting for me because Lynne is one of my favorite photographers. I will never forget a few months into what would become Singular Beauty, my photo teacher Joel Sternfled, looked at my empty spa room and said, “I think you should look at Lynne Cohen.” Of course after seeing her extraordinary work, I almost abandoned my entire project. But after some time and thought, her work made me realize how important conceptual framework is to a body of work, and I also began to see how despite the similar subject matter, how very different our approach and ultimate goals were.
If you have a chance check out her show here.
Lynne Cohen | Untitled (Submarines)
July 13, 2009
While I am sure you have all already seen it, Joerg Colberg is holding a fundraiser for his blog Conscientious. Blogs are indeed a labor of love, and Amy and I have certainly discovered from Women in Photography how demanding and time consuming they can be. And Joerg certainly treats his blog as a professional endeavour, all done for no compensation. The reality of internet advertising, is that if you have less than a 100,000 hits a day, you really are not going to make any money.
So, if you read his blog and can spare $5, $10, or $20+ dollars, it is a worthy cause indeed.
February 17, 2009
The art world is a-twitter with stories about the possible resurrection of the depression-era public arts project, the WPA. The program resulted in some of America’s finest photography. However, according to the blog post below, some Congressman do not think “artist” is a job, and therefore they should not benefit from the stimulus package.
What I find so interesting is the the recent Holland Cotter NYtimes article accused the art world of being overly commercialized and seemed to suggest that “artist” had become too much of a job. Hmmmm….. where does that actually leave us? Maybe if there was support for artists, they would stop making over-produced commercialized work, designed to sell and you know, pay their rent.
From the blog: The Artful Manager
Do arts jobs count as jobs? Scott Lilly at the Center for American Progress floats a timely reminder to the good folks in Congress currently bristling about the stimulus package: arts jobs are jobs, regardless of your opinion of what they produce. He quotes Rep. Jack Kingston’s (R-GA) remarks when complaining about the NEA funding (now removed) from the bill:
“We have real people out of work right now and putting $50 million in the NEA and pretending that’s going to save jobs as opposed to putting $50 million in a road project is disingenuous.”
Which suggests, of course, that artists, cultural managers, stagehands, gallery staff, technicians, costume designers, and anybody else involved in artistic pursuits aren’t actually working, or earning a paycheck, or supporting their families, or any of the other productive things road workers might do. Or, to put it more bluntly, arts workers are not ”real people.”
It’s perfectly fair to challenge the ”stimulus potential” of any line item in the massive bill. And there are legitimate arguments to be made that one form of spending or incentive works more quickly, more effectively, more efficiently than another. But this particular line of attack, suggesting that the arts don’t involve people doing jobs, is staggering in its ignorance.
Before we go railing off on conservative politicians, however, we might look for the same bias and blindness among ourselves. I was at a conference panel recently, for example, in which an architect from a well-respected firm with extensive cultural facility projects to their credit made an astounding admission: up until their most recent project, that involved direct discussion with a wide range of practitioners, they hadn’t thought of a cultural facility as a workplace. A performance/display space, an audience chamber, and a public venue, to be sure. Even an administrative office tucked away in the back. But the entire building as a daily workplace for professionals and tradespeople? A novel idea.
Perhaps that explains why so many cultural facilities have spaces that can’t be cleaned, lightbulbs that can’t be changed without massive machinery, and offices and common spaces that cramp and confound the folks who come to work there every day. Somewhere between our lofty rhetoric about the power of the arts, and our mechanical arguments about social and civic benefits, there seems to be a disconnect in our message. The arts are people. They don’t just serve people or help people, they are people. It’s astounding that anyone would understand otherwise.
February 8, 2009
February 2, 2009
Today on my morning subway commute, I noticed some EMT workers walking past me with all their gear. I did not pay too much attention, I was in a hurry to get to work, however as I got to the other end of the platform, I was met with the overpowering smell of bleach. I looked down and discovered an MTA worker moping up a red substance. It took my brain a split second to process that for the first time in my entire NYC subway travels, (10 years and counting,) I was seeing blood getting wiped away.
This this might not seem very dramatic to some, NYC is a big city and certainly stuff does happen here – and in this particular occurrence, with no sign of police on the scene, I assume the blood was not the result of an act of violence. But it spooked me nonetheless, especially considering just last week on the same platform, I watched a man escape from the clutches of a transit cop, and handcuffed, jump down onto the R/W track and disappear. He was soon followed by about 10 bewildered looking cops. The escape managed to shut down the entire N/S subway traffic for a good 20 minutes. In my 10 years of subway riding I have seen some strange things, but in Giuliani & post-Giuliani NYC, this level of mayhem is rare. But I have noticed a chance since the collapse of Wall Street this fall, things are no longer just frayed around the edges, but starting unravel.
In the past 2 months, I personally have had several rather intense and fraught encounters. And several people have told me stories, that have really made me question if we are on the verge of a collective breakdown. One story, involved a person leaving an incredibly hostile, threatening phone call, fueled by professional jealousy. The anonymous caller felt the need to tell her, she was ugly and other choice expletives, which no matter how much you may dislike a person, are never appropriate to use. Another friend had someone take the time to send them an email, basically just to tell them that they thought their photography sucked. This person did not even remove their name from the email. Another person received an email that was an angry, three paragraph tirade, and by anger, I mean personal, venomous, attack. What is going on people!!!!! When did this type of behavior become acceptable? I cannot ever remember so many negative, random acts of hostility. However, considering the current economic horror show, I am not surprised.
To me, one the first priority’s of the Obama administration should be to institute a qualified non-political commission to investigate the incredible malfeasance in Wall Street and in banking which has led to this global recession/depression. Because as much as we should focus on recovery, most people are suffering from feelings of incredible anger, and a sense that they are powerless to do anything about it. When you read that the wives of mega hedgefunds managers, CEO’s & investment bankers, are struggling to make do with their housekeepers coming 5 days a week instead of seven, or buying one pair of $700 Manolo’s, instead of three, it is hard to not want to burn down the whole of Greenwich, CT. Perhaps this is why so many people are acting out on strangers. Someone must take the brunt of our collective anxiety, fear & anger. Of course, these feelings are destructive and the exact opposite of what will help to lift us out of this economic disaster. I think most of us, would feel a lot better, if we considered pooling our resources and supporting each other to survive this period of instability.
The art world has been particularly affected by the economic crisis. One could easily argue, that when a roof over ones head & food on the table become issues, art tends to drop down on list of importance. But abandoning art and artists at this moment, could have a profound effect on how we interpret and think about this moment in culture. So now more than ever, it seems crucial that the art world pull together to make it through the storm.
On great example of this is the the Humble Arts Foundation. They just released their Collectors Guide, which they are in the process of distributing to the art industry and collectors. (full disclosure my work is featured in the guide.) And while artists did pay a fee, once they were chosen to be included, it was modest, and was paid in two installments. Humble footed almost the entire production bill themselves. And by distributing the guide in the art world, they are giving every artist in the book incredible exposure. Now, they very easily could have used the guide as a way to make money for the foundation, but they are choosing to use it as a tool to showcase artists, just like their group & solo shows do.
What impresses me most about this choice is that we are all in extremely difficult positions. Gallery owners have incredible overhead to meet, artists have fewer outlets and opportunities, and non-profit’s donations are drying up. So if there has ever been time to consider how we can work together, this is it. If not, when this crisis is over, there will be dramatically fewer players left on the field. Some may argue that this is a good thing, but keep in mind, that fewer galleries, museums and organizations mean fewer opportunities for artists. And while yes, the art market has been over-hyped, over-saturated and over-indulged for sometime, leaving it to starve to death now, is no panacea.
So if you find yourself feeling like venting, take a few moments and consider what you could bring to the table rather than what you can knock off of it.
December 17, 2008
If you, like me, are being bombarded this year with emails advertising sales on top of sales with extra discounts on top, you may want to take a moment to read this short article by Anne Quindlen on Newsweek.com. It is right on target. With these offers, I can’t help but get sucked in and seeing those discounts makes me almost think I have money to shop, almost. But it also makes it harder to not indulge, sort of like working at a chocolate factory. This little tidbit from the article helps me put it into perspective:
Hard times offer the opportunity to ask hard questions, and one of them is the one my friend asked, staring at sweaters and shoes: why did we buy all this stuff? Did anyone really need a flat-screen in the bedroom, or a designer handbag, or three cars? If the mall is our temple, then Marc Jacobs is God. There’s a scary thought.
The Christmas Spirit reaches some Transient Flats children after Christmas via the city dump. (Text courtesy of the California State Library)
“Prints and Negatives,” c. 1935 – c. 1960
Department of Social Welfare
California State Archives
December 15, 2008
I came across this very effective use of photoshop and multimedia technology on the nytimes.com. While the current economic crisis has most people feeling pretty down, one can only imagine what the holidays must be like for America’s military families. It may sound like new age mumbo jumbo, but until we are finally free of the dark shadow that has hung over this country for the last 8 years, we will not proper as a nation.
© The New York Times
December 12, 2008
One good thing that has come from the digital revolution, is that the average person has access to cameras that can make stunning images. I stumbled across these online, from the Butterflies of Africa Centre. The center is devoted to the study and protection of the butterflies and other animals. And the images on the site are just plain beautiful.
Looking at this work makes me think of the future of the vernacular photograph. One of my favorite examples from the past being Kinsey, photographer. The popularity of the Disfarmer work, and many other books that have used vintage everyday photographs, show the incredible and surprising value that this type of work can possess. But now that we have gone “digital” will all of the billions of jpegs being created be “discovered” someday in the future? Will people come across discarded or past down external hard rives, memory sticks or dvd’s at garage sales and flea markets? Will they be able to piece together the same kind of visual records? And what of websites? Once their hosting service expires they simply cease to exist for all intents. As a photographer still shooting film, and making physical prints and books, I suppose I am a bit of Luddite. But there is something to be said for a photographs ability to travel to through time. It will be interesting to see what happens.
December 5, 2008
If you had to ask me what has meant the most to me so far in my pursuit of photography, I would say two things. First, it has allowed me to step away from myself and to become stronger and more able to accept and utilize criticism. Second, it has brought some of the most special, intelligent, and talented people into my life. For that alone, the toil, money and sacrifice is worth it. I think that is why early photographers formed movements and groups, they were all like-minded individuals who wanted to spend time together.
One person who came into my life almost at the outset of my photo journey was photographer Jesse Chehak. When I was in school, even before I started studying with Joel Sternfeld, I was lucky enough to get an internship at a newly launched photo agency, Redux Pictures. One of my first jobs there (of many) was to go through every magazine that came in the door, pick out good work and then cold call photographers about stock representation. Well Jesse Chehak was one of my first picks. And in a strange twist of events he had recently studied with Joel, who I had just begun classes with. I vividly remember looking at his portfolio for the first time, even at that stage in my photo knowledge, I recognized he had something special. My instincts were right because shortly thereafter he was selected for PDN 30, signed with a top agency and has not looked back since in his photo career.
Near Palmer, Alaska. 2007
So it has been lovely for me to see his career grow and run into him from time to time, as I finally made my way as a photographer. One thing that has always stuck me about Jesse, is what a positive and sunny attitude he has, so often those of us trapped in the cycle of taking our work out and waiting for our turn at bat (that may never come) bad mouth everything and everyone and get caught up in a negative cycle. I certainly have done it myself on occasion. I often have conversations about the process of going from making a great body of work, to being offered a solo show. Sometimes it seems like some sort of magical line that is impossible to cross. So I asked Jesse to answer some questions about how his first Chelsea solo show came about, and what the experience was like. He very generously took the time to share his experience.
Near Three Rivers, California. 2007
GG. How did you meet your gallerist? By appointment, portfolio review, or did they see your work and contact you?
JC. I met Bruce Silverstein after a chance encounter with one of his gallery assistants at last year’s NY Photo Fest in Dumbo. She is an old friend of a friend that I hadn’t seen in ages, but was always fond of– a real smarty pants and a total sweetheart. She asked me to come and show Bruce some of my work and so I did, hoping for some good feedback and a chance to practice talking about my work, something that always makes me sweat. That day I met with Bruce and his staff, including his director Elizabeth Shank who I adore. The appointment was positive, and really I just sat back and watched them argue a bit about my work, adding bits here and there and answering some basic questions about how and when the photographs were made. I left feeling good about having met with a new group of obviously serious people, no more no less. I rushed out of town that evening, starting work on a two week project in Iowa that totally consumed me. I had forgotten to follow up with Bruce and send requested additional materials because of how busy and isolated I was at the time. One of his assistants sent a polite email reminding me of this and I answered promptly. The next evening Bruce called me from his home and asked if I’d be interested in putting together a show with him in his new space on 20th Street.
GG. How many group exhibitions have you been in before your solo show?
JC. I have participated in a handful of group shows, but none with much art world-cred. I am pretty reclusive and cautious about promoting what I consider my serious work. While I realize this hasn’t helped me woo the hearts those assembling the group shows, it has kept me away from a lot of the fluff. To be totally honest, I am not a huge fan of group photography shows unless all of the artists are working and thinking together towards a common set of ideals– like the f64 group or the Photo League. That said, I have signed on to a group documentary project that is taking place next year that will hopefully produce some interesting results.
GG. Is this your first solo show ever, or just in NYC?
JC. It was my New York debut, however I put together two solo shows in Los Angeles that got very little attention.
GG. How involved was the gallery in selecting the edit, framing choices and installation? Were you happy with the final result?
JC. The edit for Western Views was mutually decided upon between Bruce, Elizabeth, and myself. We discussed at length this edit because it is a slice of a larger body of work, Fool’s Gold, that is nearing completion. Fool’s Gold addresses a myriad of issues pertaining to the American West, and because of the size of his space and how I print this work, we could only fit about 6 or 7 pieces. So we focused on photographs that discuss non-human dominance despite what impact we have made. I have very specific and worked out printing and framing ideas for Fool’s Gold, so Bruce had little input on this front. Thankfully he is a very respectful and trusting individual and so I just had the pieces delivered a day before the show opened. We were all delighted with how it turned out.
Installation view | Bruce Silverstein Galllery, September 4 – October 11 2008
GG. Did you enjoy your opening or was it overwhelming?
JC. The opening was great but I’ll admit I was pretty overwhelmed and nervous. Luckily I had my wife there with me to hold my hand and to crack jokes with. Oh, and my outrageous father to entertain the crowd and keep things light. I have an amazing support system of friends and family that keep me grounded because I have a tendency to float off into the clouds at times.
GG. Did the experience exceed, meet, or miss your expectations?
JC. Let’s just say I am still recovering from what was an amazing experience. I look forward to future opportunities to share my work with my audience in this way.
Climax Mine Near Leadville, Colorado. 2007
GG. What would you do differently?
JC. I would spend more time in the city when the show was up, inviting people to visit the space with me. I think it is really important to be available to discuss and promote the show in person.
GG. Have other opportunities opened up to you as a result of the show?
JC. I have been approached by a gallery in Paris that wishes to distribute some of my other work in a sort of 20×200 way. We are working on the details now. Also, the Western Views work is traveling to Art Fairs with Bruce, offering it to a greater audience. It is at Art Miami now.
GG. Do you feel a part of a “club now” you are a Chelsea solo exhibited artist!
JC. Hilarious Cara! First rule of exhibited artist club…
Primm, Nevada. 2007
GG. How long have you been out there as an artist/ photographer?
JC. Both of my parents are committed working artists so I grew up surrounded by it. I studied music and performance in my youth, convincing all around me, including myself, that playing in touring bands was my calling. After two years of frustration and disillusionment in college, I took off for half a year in the Cascade Wilderness with NOLS. It changed me forever and it was there that I decided to dedicate myself to the outdoors and to protecting it. Later that year, while training to become a wilderness EMT, I discovered that my casual photographs were affecting people so I started getting serious about it. I returned to school to study with Joel Sternfeld at Sarah Lawrence College and I am extremely fortunate to have such incredible mentors pushing my practice and challenging my ideas. It’s all been about patience and dedication despite the ups and downs. Oh, music is still very important to me and I use it as an outlet whenever I need to. It brings me great joy.
GG. Can you talk about your work a little, process, influences?
JC. My process is always changing and often catches me off guard, however I can say that I am very much an experiential learner. This means that I don’t always see things clearly until I at a breaking point and physically in front of what it is I am seeing. Ansel Adam’s identifies this as a “visualization” and it is what keep me chomping at the bit. Getting there is usually the biggest challenge and it requires a willingness to get lost while knowing it always leads somewhere new. In other words, I would consider myself in my element while I am shooting or in hot pursuit, not in the darkroom, during the editing process, or while trying to explain the results. As for influences, I’d say it’s risky people that are not afraid to go down the rabbit hole.
GG. How long did you work on the project you showed?
JC. I started work on Fool’s Gold long before I knew what I was doing. It’s not quite finished and I am currently seeking grants to travel to a few more places to wrap it up. It’s taking me a while but that’s only because I work slowly and have exhausted most of my resources. It’s tough out there right now but I have never been more inspired by my surroundings.
GG. What are you working on now?
JC. I have a few nascent projects in the works. One is about a painfully transparent town in Eastern Iowa where my entire family is from. It is a collaboration involving many very high-spirited creative people and will include a film, book, and hopefully an exhibition. We are slated to continue work in late January and hopefully wrap it up by the spring. Also, and more importantly, I have been loosening up a bit and shooting a lot in black and white with a Leica here in New Mexico and processing my own film at home. With all the changes going on in the country, I feel it’s time to go back to the basics. It’s been amazing and totally liberating in that it is a reminder of how simple and immediate photography can be.
September 15, 2008
September 13, 2008
When I started GG, I was filled with apprehension and anxiety about introducing my work to the world. For a long time I avoided showing it to anyone, because my confidence was not there and I did not have the words yet to express myself in conceptual terms. Blogging and finding a community of fellow artists and curators helped me move past those issues. For so long, my photo mentor would push me to get out there and act like I deserved it, but until I slowly, bit by bit, started to believe it for myself, I was unable to. Some people are able to ‘fake it till they make it,’ but for me it is crucial that things in my life are genuine. My relationships with friends, family, colleagues, my images and my writing, so I had to wait until I could be genuine in presenting my work.
It is important to find a way to develop your confidence. It is not about ego, or self-aggrandizement, but about a heartfelt belief in what you are doing. There is a big difference between hubris and excitement for your own success. I grew up being told to “not get a big head,” and believing that success was to be hidden and downplayed because it would make people hate you. So eventually it seemed like failure was a better option, because at least it made you stop being a target. However the cost was too high. There has definitely been a trend to find the next hot young thing in the photo world, and artists are easily sucked into the hype. And if the lightening does not strike, and the first time you show your work to a gallery they don’t offer you a solo show, there is a tendency to feel like a failure. But last night, I realized that taking your time and slowly building your way up, is a much better route. With each step forward, I have time to think and digest and chose what is best for my work.
And as much as we like to believe in the cult of the individual in America, finding mentors and building relationships with those who can help you is imperative. Everything that has happened to me so far has been the result of both incredible effort on my part but also an equal amount of support and encouragement from others. And curating has absolutely helped me grow as an artist. I highly recommend focusing your energy on the work of others to open up your perspective. I succeed every two weeks, when I see how great the work looks on Women in Photography, and feel proud of everything Amy and I, with the support of Humble Arts, have been able to accomplish.
The art world is a tough place, and there are so many talented people out there, it is so important to focus on the things that matter. The highlight of my opening last night, was seeing one of my oldest friend’s from New York, now living in LA, appear in front of my picture without any warning. And seeing all of the other people I love come out to support me in a group show, made having my image on the wall mean so much more.
The icing on the cake, thanks you Nina and Christopher for the heads up, was discovering that James Danziger singled out my image to review on his blog, and oh yes, I come after Joel Sternfeld, Roe Ethridge, Alessandra Sanguinetti, and Vik Muniz. The post is an excellent survey of the fall photo season, and worth a look for that. Today is a very good day. (check out Will Steacy pic in the first image, my partner in crime at the show last night!) If you missed the show last night, Micheal Mazzeo has put together a really nice group of work and it runs through Oct 11th.
May 23, 2008
Roger Ballen, one of my favorite images from the NYPF
I know I have been MIA since the last week’s NYPF, but it took me a little while to recover from photo-overload. There are a lot of great posts about the event, Shane, Andrew, Joerg, Robert, and others all have their take on the events. For me it really was a whirlwind of meeting people, and observing how the NY photo world operates. Relationships are the secret to the art world. For instance, Kathy Ryan was accessible for the whole event. I saw her giving numerous tours of her exhibit and talking to everyone. I never quite got up the nerve to introduce myself, even though I have emailed with her before. It just seemed too desperate, like throwing yourself at the hottest guy at bar at 3:45 am. But it was super interesting to watch everyone and listen to the conversations. There is definitely an inside world that once you are in, gives you a lot more opportunities. But while I may not be in that circle, I saw a lot of friends and made some new ones. I am still blown away that people know my work & blog. It is nice to know people get something out of GG.
That is why I am excited about WIP. At this moment, everything in the world is in flux. The internet is absolutely changing how we relate to each other. There is something great about people reaching out and forming communities. It empowers them to express themselves and to connect. Amy Elkins has been an incredible partner on this project. Not only do we feel like we are doing something that could really be positive, we are having a lot of fun. My hope is that WIP can help create more community among women artists. We are already scheduled through March of next year and still have a bunch of great artists to put on the calendar. Amy and I are really committed to showing quality work and to giving people a place to further their art career. So when we launch, I hope people spread the word about the site to friends and photo/art contacts. There will be a launch party in mid-June, more to come soon…
This project has me thinking a lot about intentions lately and what I want to get out of this experience. I think having a solo show online, can be a way to reach people who for various reasons don’t go to galleries. And perhaps help someone get noticed in the very crowded field of fine-art photographers. But the web is a funny thing, every good intention can come with a price.
Last night Nightline had a story about a stay a home Mom that has created an online blog for women to post their pictures and ask strangers to tell them what to do with their hair. She has a 2 year line up of people waiting to get help to ‘look better.’ While researching the hair site, I came across this blog, which illustrates the type of thinking that leads women to the Plastic Surgeons consult chair. I am sure Hair Thursday is only trying to help, but as soon as you use the internet community for this kind of thing, I think you are on dangerous ground.
Hi. How are ya? Please ignore my rosacea, beady eyes, crooked nose, and double chin. This is about the HAIR, people!
Hair Thursday features images of everyday women, who are given advice on their hair. Each person has a celebrity or two selected as their “model” of what they should aim for.
The web is full of places where you are welcome to be rated, the web boards of Teen Vogue include page after page of these rate me posts. As an artist I am fascinated about the human need to feel special. A large part of the Cosmetic Surgery experience is about this drive to be ‘seen’ even it is means being judged.
April 6, 2008
One thing I hear from men a lot (including my own boyfriend) is that women complain too damn much. Most men’s number one complaint about their wives and girlfriends is that they just want to talk endlessly about their problems, and they don’t see what that solves? I think it is perhaps too much of a generalization to say that all women like to discuss, mull over and talk through their issues and difficulties, but from my experience most women do find comfort in being listened to. We don’t like to just take action, without time to reflect and hear the thoughts of others. I personally think in some ways this makes us able to deal with more complex issues. When something does not have a clear cut solution men often get angry or frustrated. They want to ‘fix it’ and move on. Of course all of this is varies from person to person, but in my experience there is some truth to it. So when Joerg first emailed me about the Times article, I could see that he wanted to find a way to fix things right away. But he was frustrated because as a man there was only so much he could do about it. I am saddened by the responses to my post that directed their anger to Joerg. If you look at his blog, he clearly features just as many male and female photographers in both interviews and image selection. What more can we ask of men, then to be sensitive to our struggle and to give us the same opportunities as they give men.
The most important thing is that now, several amazing and talented women are using their considerable gifts to try and come up with ideas to make things better. Many of these issues are actually between women and about how we view ourselves and the world. So it seems to me, that we should be the ones to work to solve them. Hence the creation of Women in Contemporary Photography which is still in the development stage, that be a showcase for the work of women photographers. And the Ask me logo, when you see the logo, you know you are welcome to reach out to the person for advice, questions, or just to say hi. While we are all super busy and probably feel like we don’t have enough time already, a quick email or addressing a question on our blogs or directing the person to someone who can help seems like a reasonable goal. I invite anyone who has other ideas to bring them on. We have nothing to lose by trying all these things out. I also encourage women editors, gallery staff or any women interested to participate. I doubt women photographers are the only ones who would like to get some support.
I am excited to see where we go…
March 31, 2008
Just in case you are not completely spent from the art fairs and accompanying parties, this week has an exciting array of photo related events. I have never tried a RedBull, but looking at this line-up I may indulge. And several blog-related contests end this week, so don’t forget to send your submissions.
Also, I have added a new sidebar, which I will periodically update. I realize I am always finding new work (new to me at least) that I want to post on Ground Glass, but unfortunately I don’t always have the time. So I will now put links to the artist’s sites, so people can look discover them at their leisure. The first batch, are all discoveries from Scope.
Talk and Book Signing
Tuesday, April 01, 2008
National Arts Club
15 Gramercy Park South
New York, New York
Artist’s Lecture Tuesday, April 01, 2008
547 West 27th Street, 4th floor
New York, New York
Hosted by David Zwirner
533 West 19th Street NYC 10011
Live & Silent Auctions of Original Artwork
6-7pm: Exclusive Champagne Preview
7-9pm: Cocktail Reception & Silent Auction
8pm: Live Auction
Sze Tsung Leong
Yossi Milo Gallery (525 West 25th)
525 West 25th Street, 212-414-0370
Thursday, April 3, 6 – 8PM
Luhring Augustine Gallery
531 West 24th Street, 212-206-9100
Friday, April 4, 6 – 8PM
New York, NY 10022
Ryan McGinley Team Gallery Thursday April 3rd 6:00-8:00 Team Gallery 83 Grand St
Reuben Cox Portraits of Muscians Thursday, April 3rd 7:00-9:00 Midway, 25 Ave B
All applications must be submitted before Midnight EDT on Tuesday April 1, 2008.
Free Promo- Deadline Today Deadline for the free promo is 11:59 pm today.
What’s The Jackanory‘Room with a View’ competition Friday April 4 at Noon est
March 12, 2008
Wow, I just realized I have not posted in almost two weeks. Between shooting, post-production, having the stomach flu, a trip to the ER with my boyfriend and now putting the finishing touches on my book project I have been unable to get to blogging. I will have lots of stuff to write about soon, but I am going to have to attend to my photography for a bit longer. I hope everyone will bare with me. A few bits and pieces. If you have a chance check out the Humble Arts 31 under 31 at the 3rd Ward. I am really excited to see women photographers doing so well and the show has a lot of interesting work. Also, I will be speaking there on the 22nd of this month on a panel hosted by HA with some really talented ladies on women in art photography. More to come soon. If you have a chance, my friend Joshua Lutz has a show up at my Alma Mater, SLC, which is definitely worth the trip. He recently moved to Clamp Art and has a book coming out.
I will dig myself out soon and be back to GG.
February 26, 2008
At least when it comes to press coverage of attractiveness. I was not at all surprised when Joerg forwarded me a Cosmetic Surgery blog featuring my interview on Conscientious. As I replied to him, “there is no irony in plastic surgery.” I went to the link and was fascinated by the banner ads on the site. The headline “Age Catches up with Demi Moore Despite Fortune Spent on Cosmetic Surgery,” really encapsulates many of the issues I am exploring in my work. When I went to the Daily Mail to look at the entry, I saw another link to a George Clooney article. As you can see below, the two actors looks are portrayed quite differently.
Hmmm…. Is it just me, or are they inferring that 40 something sexist man alive George, really doesn’t need the ‘photo retouch job’ but poor 40ish Demi really looks like shit despite all the surgery. It is pretty amazing how men continue to get ‘distinguished’ and remain sexy well into middle age in Hollywood, while women never seem to be never good enough. One day these actresses are held up as beauty icons and the next they are being shredded. In reality, most actors now seem to get “work done” male and female. My mother recently mentioned to me that she saw Jessica Lange on television, and that her first thought was how old she looked. But then she realized that she just looked like a 50 something year-old woman, not like a 50 something year-old woman who has had a ton of surgery. She, like most of us, is now judging these women against a different standard. Something to consider.
February 21, 2008
I am honored to be interviewed today on Joerg Colberg’s fantastic fine-art blog, Conscientious. It was a great experience and Joerg asked some really interesting questions. Also, if you have a chance his past line-up of conversations includes, Stephen Shore, Alec Soth, Martin Parr, Richard Renadi, Brian Ulrich and a stellar list of photogs. The interview includes portriats from my latest project which is in progress.