Stephen Berkman began working with the obsolete wet-collodion process, well over 300 fort-nights ago as part of a quixotic quest to re-imagine the nineteenth century through a series of photographs that would refute the notion of history being a closed circuit; instead history is viewed as an evolving work in progress, still receptive to moments of serendipity.
In addition to his photographic body of work, Stephen Berkman creates installation projects, which explore the era of pre-chemical photography both literally and philosophically through constructions that encompass optical projections and sculptural reinterpretations of the camera obscura. His creations as a whole examine the intrinsic nature of photography during this nascent period when it was possible to create fleeting images, but impossible to fix them into permanent photographs. This search to rediscover the ephemeral nature of pre-photographic history, the scientific interplay of light and optics, and the quest for optical amusements, also known as philosophical instruments are uniquely considered throughout Berkman’s work
Berkman’s installations and photographs have been exhibited at MoPA, The Armory Center for the Arts, Stephen Cohen Gallery, Klotz Gallery, Laband Gallery and the Christine Burgin Gallery. Berkman’s photographs have been featured in the books and magazines, including Photography’s Antiquarian Avant- Garde: The New Wave in Old Processes, Blind Spot, Art in America, i-D, magazine, and The Journal of Contemporary Photography: Strange Genius.
Berkman will be speaking on The Perambulations of a 19th Century Interloper
New York, USA
Photographer Gabriel Biderman has been exploring night topography for over 15 years. Using both film and digital, he blends the surreal look of the night to enhance historic and urban landscapes. He is well versed in the history of Night Photography and teaches hands-on workshops to those willing to explore their night visions.
His most recent body of work titled “TIMEXPOSED” was a traveling show that was featured at John Allans’ in NYC from 2009-2010. He has also exhibited in galleries in NYC, San Francisco, Hawaii, Paris, and London. His pinhole work has also been published in Dark Chamers vol 2 and PInhole Photography – Rediscovering the Historic Technique by Eric Renner.
Gabriel also works at a small mom and pop camera store, B&H, where he has been presenting his seminar on Night Photography to sold out classes for over two years.
Biderman will be speaking on: Night Visions
Jill Skupin Burkholder
New York, USA
Jill Skupin Burkholder began working with photography in 1985 and studied both traditional and digital photography, experimenting with various alternative techniques. Her more recent work explores textures and surface dimension with the bromoil and encaustic processes.
She learned the bromoil process from Gene Laughter, a photographer who resurrected the technique by studying historical writings and interviewing members of The Bromoil Circle of Great Britain. Her bromoil images have been included in the publications, The Book of Alternative Processes by Christopher James, Photographic Possibilities by Robert Hirsch and in private and public collections.
Her work has been exhibited internationally and is represented in permanent collections at The Museum of Fine Art, Houston, Texas and the Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center in Austin, Texas. Burkholder taught workshops for the Texas Photographic Society, Photographers’ Formulary in Montana and Santa Fe Photographic Workshops.
She is married to fine art photographer and digital pioneer, Dan Burkholder and lives in Palenville, New York.
Burkholder will be speaking on: Ink and Wax – Explorations Beyond the Darkroom
Dan Estabrook was born in Boston, MA and attended Harvard University. He received an MFA from the University of Illinois. He has been using nineteenth-century photographic techniques to make contemporary art for over twenty years, . In the last few years he has focused on working with hand-altered calotypes and salt prints. He has exhibited widely and has received several awards, including an Artist’s Fellowship from the National Endowment of the Arts in 1994. He is represented by the Catherine Edelman Gallery in Chicago , Daniel Cooney Fine Art in New York and Jackson Fine Art in Atlanta.
Dan will be leading the featured Thursday night talk: Sally Mann a conversation with Dan Estabrook
Alida Fish is known for still-life work using manipulated photographic processes that combine both digital and darkroom techniques. After forty years of working with historic processes, she dismantled her darkroom and stopped using photographic chemicals. She is now focused on creating hand-altered digital prints that evoke some of the qualities she found in gum bichromate, tintypes, and hand painting.
Alida’s photographs have been exhibited throughout the United States in galleries and museums including The Philadelphia Museum, The Delaware Art Museum, The Portland Museum, The Albright-Knox, The Pennsylvania Academy, and The Santa Barbara Museum. She has received several fellowships including grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Delaware State Arts Council, and the Richard C. Von Hess Foundation. She has been a visiting artist at The American Academy in Rome and, most recently, was awarded an individual Masters Fellowship by the State of Delaware. She is represented by Schmidt-Dean Gallery, Philadelphia, and Alan Klotz Gallery, New York.
Alida is the interim Dean of the College of Art and Design and a professor of photography at The University of the Arts, Philadelphia. She is the Project Director for the McGonigal Trust which supports the continued practice and appreciation of hand-painted photography. She has taught workshops at many institutions including Anderson Ranch, Colorado; Haystack, Maine; Arrowmont, Tennessee; and Visual Studies Workshop, Rochester, NY. She has a long association with Penland School of Crafts in North Carolina where she has taught for many years and currently serves on their Board of Trustees.
The title of Alida’s talk: Coming to Terms with Ink.
Sally Mann was born in Lexington, Virginia in 1951. She has always remained close to her roots. She has photographed in the American South since the 1970s, producing series on portraiture, architecture, landscape and still life. She is perhaps best known for her intimate portraits of her family, her young children and her husband, and for her evocative and resonant landscape work in the American South. . Her work has attracted controversy at times, but it has always been influential, and since her the time of her first solo exhibition, at the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington D.C., in 1977, she has attracted a wide audience.
Sally Mann explored various genres as she was maturing in the 1970s: she produced landscapes and architectural photography, and she blended still life with elements of portraiture. But she truly found her metier with her second publication, a study of girlhood entitled At Twelve: Portraits of Young Women (1988). Between 1984 and 1994, she worked on the series, Immediate Family (1992), which focuses on her three children, who were then all aged under ten. While the series touches on ordinary moments in their daily lives – playing, sleeping, eating – it also speaks to larger themes such as death and cultural perceptions of sexuality. In her most recent series, Proud Flesh, taken over a six year interval, Mann turns the camera onto her husband, Larry. The resultant photographs are candid and frank portraits of a man at his most vulnerable moments.
Mann has produced two major series of landscapes: Deep South (Bullfinch Press, 2005) and Mother Land. In What Remains (Bullfinch Press, 2003), she assembled a five-part study of mortality, one which ranges from pictures of the decomposing body of her beloved greyhound, to the site where an armed fugitive committed suicide on her property in the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia. She has often experimented with color photography, but she has remained most interested in black and white, especially photography’s antique technology. She has long used an 8×10 bellows camera, and has explored platinum and bromoil printing processes. In the mid 1990s she began using the wet plate collodion process to produce pictures which almost seem like hybrids of photography, painting, and sculpture.
Sally Mann lives and works in Lexington, Virginia. A Guggenheim fellow, and a three-times recipient of the National Endowment for the Arts fellowship, Mann was named “America’s Best Photographer” by Time magazine in 2001. She has been the subject of two documentaries: Blood Ties (1994), which was nominated for an Academy Award, and What Remains (2007) which premiered at Sundance and was nominated for an Emmy for Best Documentary in 2008. She has been the subject of major exhibitions at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, and the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. Her photographs can be found in many public and private collections, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art; the Museum of Modern Art; and the Whitney Museum of American Art.
Henrieke I. Strecker
New Hampshire, USA
Henrieke I. Strecker has been involved in photography and alternative techniques for 30 years with an emphasis on pinhole photography, photograms, long exposure images, and alternative photographic printmaking processes.
She has chosen the clarity of living simply to guide her artistic pursuits. For more than three years she lived in a nature preserve in Germany and now at the borders of the National Forest of New England. Within the tranquility of these surroundings, she has created a series of photographs and photogravures which use the forest as a reflective muse. She says:
The quest for simplicity of materials and purpose in action presents the greatest challenge for direct expression. The deeper I immerse myself in my work, which means to go deeper within myself, the deeper I move into the unknown. To travel deeper into my work process is like traveling on a white map. Every step is a new mark on that map; it’s like drawing on a blank sheet of paper, and line by line it will become a drawing. Most of my images have no titles. I want observers to get in touch with the images so that they will find their own story. I would never name a breath. My wish is that my images are still breathing even though the processes are done.
She teaches workshops at schools around the US. She has an active and extensive exhibiting resume (www.henriekestrecker.com), both in Europe and in America, and teaches photography at Plymouth State University in New Hampshire.
Strecker will be speaking on: POTATO SOUP. ART and LIFE: I don’t make a difference.
Brian Taylor is known for his innovative explorations of alternative photographic processes including non-silver printing techniques, mixed media, and hand made books. He has been a recipient of grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Polaroid Corporation. His work has been exhibited nationally and abroad in numerous solo and group shows and is included in the permanent collections of the Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris; the Victoria and Albert Museum, London; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; and the International Museum of Photography at the George Eastman House, Rochester, NY. His work has been published in American Photographer, Photo Asia, and most recently, Exploring Color Photography.
Born in Tucson, Arizona, Brian received his B.A. Degree in Visual Arts from the University of California at San Diego, an M.A. from Stanford University and his M.F.A. from the University of New Mexico. Brian is currently a Professor of Photography and Chairman of the Art Department at California State University, in San Jose.
Taylor will be speaking on The Art of Getting Lost
Our Past Participant Speakers Include:
Rebecca Sexton Larson
Rebecca Sexton Larson is a Tampa based studio artist working with alternative photographic processes. She graduated from the University of South Florida with degrees in Fine Arts and Mass Communications. She was awarded Florida Individual Artist Fellowships in 1998, 2002, and 2008. In 2006, she received an Artist Enhancement Grant from the State of Florida and, in 2005, was commissioned by the City of Tampa to be its Photographer Laureate for a year.
During the past 15 years, Sexton Larson has taught, lectured and exhibited work nationally at various arts institutions and organizations.
Sexton Larson’s photographs are in numerous major collections throughout the country, including: Polaroid, Progressive Corporate Art, Graham Nash (Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young), Holland and Knight Law Firm, Polk Museum of Art, and the Tampa Museum of Art.
Currently her work is featured in the book, Pinhole Photography: Rediscovering a Historic Technique by Eric Renner. Rebecca Sexton Larson is Associate Curator and Registrar at the Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art in Tarpon Springs, Florida.
Larson will be speaking on Adversity and the Creative Process
San Francisco, CA
Erin Malone is a long-time pinhole and zoneplate photographer. Her work has been exhibited in galleries across the country, including Corden|Potts Gallery (SanFrancisco), PHOTO Gallery,(Oakland), Rayko Photo Center (San Francisco), SFMOMA Artists Gallery (San Francisco), SOHO Photo Gallery (New York), Berkeley Arts Center (Berkeley), PhotoMedia Center (Pennsylvania). She is the producer and editor of the randomly published website Without Lenses (www.withoutlenses.com), which features the work of artists working lensless.
Her recent foray into alternative processes, include Cyanotype, Van Dyke, Salt Printing, Lumen Prints and Photo Gravure, and has led her to the painstaking, yet incredibly rewarding anti-computer, process of gum-printing.
She holds a BFA from East Carolina University and an MFA from Rochester Institute of Technology and spends her days, mostly on a computer, working as a User Experience Design consultant in San Francisco.
Malone will be speaking on Fragments of Missions.
Jessica Somers is a photographer specializing in historic photographic techniques and self-portraiture.
Jessica has been in love with photography for most of her life. She was exposed to the act of picture making through her grandfather, an avid amateur photographer, and in the family bathroom-turned-darkroom after sunset. Here, her parents would allow her to witness actual magic as she stood over the chemical trays watching an image appear where only a simple white sheet of paper was before. As a kid she received a Kodak disc camera and became addicted to the act of expressing her individual view of the world from the 4 foot high perspective of a seven year old. Her height has since increased but her addiction continues.
Jessica’s work has been exhibited nationally, has been published in various periodicals and the second edition of The Book of Alternative Photographic Processes, by Christopher James. Her photographs can be viewed and purchased through the John Cleary Gallery in Houston, TX and Galerie BMG in Woodstock, NY. She currently teaches photography throughout Connecticut and at the Art Institute of Boston.
Somers will be speaking on One Hundred Days of Tintypes.
Mary Dorsey Wanless
Marydorsey Wanless is a fine art photographer and educator living in Topeka, Kansas. She is an Assistant Professor of Photography in the Art Department at Washburn University in Topeka, where she teaches black/white darkroom photography, alternative processes, and advanced digital photography.
Her work incorporates personal experiences combined with alternative photographic processes. She has exhibited regionally, nationally, and internationally; and has received many awards, including the Grand Prize in the SoHo Gallery’s alternative photography show, The Krappy Kamera Exhibit 2009. Her work has been published in SilverShotz 2009, Art Buzz 2010, Plates to Pixels Magazine, Visual Overture Magazine, Lightleaks, Shots, and Feminist Media Studies. and in the 2nd edition of Plastic Cameras: Toying with Creativity by Michelle Bates.
She received a Bachelors of Science in Art Education with teaching certification in 1971,and a Masters of Arts in Interior Design in 1972, both from University of Missouri at Columbia. She completed a Masters of Fine Arts in Photography from Kansas State University in 2009.
Wanless will be speaking on Evidence of Aging.