Presenting your work across mediums is hard. Catalogs, installations, galleries, museums, books, zines, sites and feeds all have their own strengths and limitations, not to mention historical traditions and viewer expectations. Sometimes the book is fantastic but the prints are underwhelming, or show is transcendent but it looks so tedious in the pictures from the opening online. This class analyzes how the sensory experience of viewing an artwork affects how we understand the work itself. The goal is to give students the critical tools to be more thoughtful about the way they present work to potential viewers.
Our first session will survey a number of contemporary artists, and discuss the ways that their work translates (or doesn’t) in specific venues. Does the photobook make sense on the wall? Is a vintage Stephen Shore picture interesting on Instagram? What changes when Zoe Strauss moves her prints from the freeway underpass and into the museum? Does this black and white photo document the conceptual piece, or does it replace it with the aura of the ephemeral and authentic? Later in the course, students will be asked to present and write about works by their favorite artists, and discuss in each case how the medium affects the way we see the work. Last, students will then act as curators, designing their own exhibitions, publications, and performances and discussing them through group critique.
Ward Long is photographer living in Oakland, California. He received his MFA in Photography at the University of Hartford in 2015, and his undergraduate degree at Davidson College.
His pictures describe loss, people, and landscape, and the way all three are inexorably linked by memory. Combining literary precision and cinematic sweep, his projects blend personal storytelling with documentary realism. Much of his work takes shape as handmade books; recent titles have centered on longing for home and the fear you'll never find it, madness and used cars in Jacksonville, and swimming hole cliff in North Carolina.
He received a 2017 Beth Block grant from the Houston Center of Photography, has exhibited nationally, and his work has been featured in SPOT, Burn Magazine, C-41, and YET. He taught analog photography at the University of Hartford, has been a guest critic at the San Francisco Art Institute, and works as a fine art master printer. His self-published books have been exhibited at art fairs and shows across the country, and are in the collections of the University of Virginia, the University of Hartford, and Pier 24 Photography.View Gallery »