Research seminar: History of Photography


The One, the Many



Wednesday, 13 November 2013
17.30, Research Forum South Room, The Courtauld Institute of Art, Somerset House, Strand, London WC2R 0RN

Film still from Jean-Luc Godard’s Les Carabiniers (1963)Film still from Jean-Luc Godard’s Les Carabiniers (1963)Speaker(s): David Campany
Ticket/entry details: Open to all, free admission
Organised by: Sara Knelman and Prof Julian Stallabrass (The Courtauld Institute of Art)

‘With photography the essence is done very quickly with a flash of the mind, and with a machine. I think too that photography is editing, editing after the taking. After knowing what to take you have to do the editing’. So said Walker Evans. Arguably the significance of modern photography is as much to do with the editing together of pictures as it is the pictures themselves. And in many ways the rise of the curator in contemporary art was foreshadowed long ago by the rise of the editor of photographs across visual culture, from magazine art directors, to art historians relying on reproductions, to photographers assembling their images into definitive bodies of work. David Campany will explore this question from a number of directions, historical and contemporary.

David Campany writes, curates exhibitions, makes art and teaches at the University of Westminster. His books include Walker Evans: the magazine work (Steidl 2013), Gasoline (MACK, 2013), Jeff Wall: Picture for Women (Afterall, 2010), Photography and Cinema (Reaktion, 2008) and Art and Photography (Phaidon, 2003). This year he has curated Mark Neville: Deeds Not Words at The Photographer's Gallery and a major show of the work of Victor Burgin at Ambika P3, London.


The History of Photography research seminar series
aims to be a discursive platform for the discussion and dissemination of current research on photography. From art as photography and early photographic technology to ethnographic photographs and contemporary photography as art, the seminar welcomes contributions from researchers across the board, whether independent or affiliated with museums, galleries, archives, libraries or higher education, and endeavors to provide scholars with a challenging opportunity to present work in progress and test out new ideas.

The seminars usually take place once a term, on Wednesday evenings at 5.30pm in the Research Forum. The papers, and formal discussion, are followed by informal discussion and refreshments.



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