61-80 of 99 results  for:

  • Twentieth-Century Art x
  • Photography x
  • American Art x
  • Contemporary Art x
Clear all


Celia Stahr

(b Bugok, South Korea, April 29, 1953).

American photographer and installation artist of Korean birth. Min came to the USA when she was seven and went on to study art at the University of California, Berkeley, receiving her BA in 1975, her MA in 1977 and her MFA in 1979. She has described herself as a child of Cold War politics and a member of the 1.5 generation who are Korean-born Americans. She occupies a liminal space, something that is often explored in her art. In Make Me (1989; see Cahan and Kocur, p. 85), she placed various texts, such as ‘Model Minority’, over four different bisected photographs of her face. These cut photographs with text force the viewer to confront common stereotypical images of Asian Americans.

In much of Min’s art, personal issues are tied to international power struggles, deCOLONIZATION (1991; see Neumaier, pp. 134–7), for example is a mixed-media installation that examines the social and psychological impact of colonialism on Korean women. In the centre of the installation a traditional Korean dress, on which there are handwritten excerpts in Korean and English from Won Ko’s poem ...


Monica Majoli

(b Shreveport, LA, 1948).

American painter, photographer, and video artist. Minter received her MFA from Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY, in 1972. She produced a series of paintings from the late 1970s that mined the banal quotidian in virtuosic, conceptually driven photorealistic oil paintings featuring affectless expanses of grey linoleum floor as a backdrop for plywood, aluminium foil, and coffee stains in nearly abstract compositions. By 1989 Minter began using her signature imagery of the female body severely cropped, often for erotic effect, either using hardcore pornography as source material or eliciting references to pornographic imagery as a subtext in self-staged photographic shoots. A master of surface and illusion, Minter’s enamel paintings on aluminum belie their photographic source material, created at first hand by Minter and reconfigured in Photoshop from as many as 20 or 30 darkroom negatives. Idiosyncratically, the final layer of sticky enamel paint is finessed by fingertip to obscure brush marks—the fingerprints are revealed on close observation. Insisting on the triumph of the body over its image in this overt indexical trace, Minter restated the tactile nature of painting itself just as she used photography to capture her subject and shock her spectator. The Baroque period is cited as a historical precursor of Minter’s oeuvre, revelling as it does in passion over rationality, shimmering, gilded excess, and monumental compositional undulations reminiscent of flesh itself and its urges. Like painters of the 17th century, Minter also employed a studio of artists who assisted her in creating all facets of her production, a system of making she employed from ...


Deborah Cullen

[MoMA] (New York)

The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) was founded in 1929 by patrons Lillie P(lummer) Bliss, Cornelius J. Sullivan and Rockefeller family §(1) to establish an institution devoted to modern art. Over the next ten years the Museum moved three times and in 1939 settled in the Early Modern style building (1938–9) designed by Philip S. Goodwin and Edward Durell Stone that it still occupies at 11 West 53 Street. Subsequent renovations and expansions occurred in the 1950s and 1960s by Philip Johnson, in 1984 by Cesar Pelli and in 2002–4 by Yoshirō Taniguchi (b 1937). MoMA QNS, the temporary headquarters during this project, was subsequently used to provide art storage. In 2000, MoMA and the contemporary art space, P.S.1, Long Island City, Queens, announced their affiliation. Recent projects are shown at P.S.1 in Queens in a renovated public school building.

According to founding director, Alfred H(amilton) Barr...


Jason E. Hill

(b Syracuse, NY, March 14, 1948).

American photojournalist. Nachtwey worked with the photo agencies Black Star (1980–85), Magnum (1986–2001), and VII (2001–), of which he was a founding member, and has been under contract with Time magazine since 1984. Nachtwey studied art history and political science at Dartmouth College (1966–70). Inspired by the civil rights and Vietnam War photography of Larry Burrows and Don McCullan, Nachtwey took to photojournalism, beginning in 1976 with a four-year stint covering local news at the Albuquerque Journal in New Mexico. In 1980 he moved to New York City and worked as a freelance photojournalist. His first domestic reporting covered the 1980 Boston school-busing controversy, and his first foreign assignment took him to Northern Ireland to cover Bobby Sands and the 1981 IRA hunger strike. From this point on, Nachtwey was singularly committed to making visible the human costs of military conflict and other manmade humanitarian crises. His first book-length collection ...


Deborah A. Middleton

(b Fort Wayne, IN, Dec 6, 1941).

American conceptual artist. Recognized as one of the most influential, innovative, and provocative 20th century American artists, Nauman extended the media of sculpture, film, video, photography, and sound with performance and spatial explorations. Nauman attended the University of Wisconsin–Madison from 1960 to 1964, with early studies in mathematics and physics, which broadened to the study of art under Italo Scanga (1932–2001). He received a master’s degree in Fine Art from the University of California, Davis in 1966 under William T. Wiley, Robert Arneson, Frank Owen (b 1939), and Stephen Kaltenbach (b 1940) and honorary degrees from the San Francisco Art Institute (1989) and California Institute of Art (2000). In 1966 he began to teach at the San Francisco Art Institute.

Nauman’s interactive artworks and performances explore the syntactical nuances of language, text, and figurative gesture to create material culture and in-between places, which often result in a heightened sense of physical and emotional awareness. Nauman’s artistic explorations of spatial perception, bodily consciousness, physical and mental activity, and linguistic manipulation were demonstrated in interactive spatial compositions that accentuated various relationships between the human body and built environments. Early works included body castings and holographic self-images with subsequent works situating the viewer within their own mental and bodily perceptions. In ...


Francis Summers

(b Qazvin, Iran, March 26, 1957).

American photographer and video artist of Iranian birth. She studied at the University of California, Berkeley, where she was awarded a BFA in 1979 and an MFA in 1982. She became involved in the Storefront for Art and Architecture in New York when she was unable to return to Iran for political reasons. Years later, having settled in New York, she began making art in response to the situation she found after a visit to the post-Shah religious state. Using the Islamic veil, or chador, she made photographs that examined stereotypes of Muslim women as oppressed by the veil but also empowered by their refusal of the Western colonial gaze, as in Women of Allah (1993–7) and Rebellious Silence (1994; see 2000 exh. cat., p. 61). In these works Neshat is often posed with a gun, her image overlaid in Islamic script, as a way of confronting the Western view of Islam as both incomprehensible and dangerous. In ...


Francis Summers

(b Dallas, TX, June 24, 1951).

American photographer. Nicosia studied Radio, Television and Film at the University of North Texas, Denton, completing his studies in 1974. His early photographic work used a frenetic comic book style, with actors expressively posed in front of bizarre hand painted backdrops, as in Near (Modern) Disaster no. 5 (1983; see 1999 exh. cat., p. 51). Nicosia moved away from such cartoon-style work and began to make more considered, although still staged, portraits such as Danny & Conny (1985; see 1988 exh. cat., p. 54). With his Real Pictures series, Nicosia moved out of contrived studio situations and used actors outdoors, as well as black-and-white film in pursuit of greater realism. Works such as Real Pictures no. 8 (1989; see 1999 exh. cat., p. 55), a dispassionately framed image of a man threatening a clown from his car, showed Nicosia’s interest in a collision of the morbid and the absurd. Nicosia subsequently made works both in the studio, such as ...


Monica McTighe

(b Detroit, MI, 1947).

American photographer. He received his BA in American literature from the University of Michigan in 1968. After marrying in 1971, he moved to New Mexico and graduated with a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of New Mexico in 1974. He settled in Boston to teach at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design. One of the photographers involved in the revival of large format camera in the 1970s, Nixon used this format to document the lives of everyday people. Nixon is best known for his ongoing series titled The Brown Sisters and for his photographs of individuals living with HIV/AIDS.

Deciding to work exclusively with an 8×10 view camera, Nixon photographed views in Boston and New York. In 1975 Nixon was included in New Topographics: Photographs of a Man-altered Landscape, an exhibition that defined a new movement in photography characterized by the revival of the large format camera (...


Alice Ming Wai Jim

[Tetsuaki ]

(b Los Angeles, CA, March 3, 1940).

Alice Ming Wai Jim

Japanese American photographer.

In 1942, two months after the bombing of Pearl Harbor during World War II, Tetsu Okuhara and his family were forced by the US government to evacuate their Westinter Coast home and relocate to a Japanese American internment camp south of Denver, CO. After the war, the family moved to Chicago, IL, where Okuhara grew up and studied at the University of Chicago (1959–62). Working as a freelance photographer, he moved to New York to attend the Cooper Union School of Art and Architecture (1969–71). The first major public appearance of Okuhara’s work was in the July 1971 issue of Life magazine, which featured what was to be his most famous image, a 360-degree photo collage portrait of his wife. Susan (1971) consists of 112 individual black-and-white photographs of her head taken from different angles and then assembled into a single composite image using a grid format. The full nude portrait of ...


Catherine M. Grant

(b Sandusky, OH, April 4, 1961).

American photographer. She started to take photographs at the age of nine, later studying photography at the San Francisco Institute (BFA 1985) and the California Institute of the Arts, Valencia, CA (MFA 1988). The group of photographs that brought Opie international attention, Being and Having (1991) consisted of a series of head shots of butch women sporting false facial hair, for example Chief (1991; see 1997 exh. cat., p. 104). These images were of the artist’s friends in the lesbian and sado-masochist communities of San Francisco; this documentary aspect of the project continued in the Portrait series (1993–6), which consists of portraits of transgendered men and women, leather dykes and drag queens, as in Mike and Sky (1993; New York, Whitney). Opie frames her subjects against richly coloured backdrops, with the images challenging heterosexual norms of identity and sexuality. In the Freeway...


Mary Christian

(b Portsmouth, NH, Aug 1, 1940).

American photographer and teacher. He took up photography after graduating from the University of New Hampshire, Durham, in 1962. His black-and-white, snapshot-like photographs treat a wide range of urban and social themes, with an emphasis upon social interaction in private and public contexts. His series of photographs of Central Park (1978–81) includes mothers with their children, a businessman enjoying his lunch, a pair of old women at opposite ends of a park bench, and a fashionable dandy napping on the grass before a great bed of tulips. While favouring the immediacy of a 35 mm camera for his candid images, in his landscapes Papageorge generally sought a clarity of image with a 6×9 cm camera.

In 1979 Papageorge was named Walker Evans Professor of Photography at the Yale University School of Art, where he also held the position of Director of Graduate Study in Photography until 2011. In ...


Francis Summers

(b Provincetown, MA, Sept 24, 1960).

American photographer and installation artist. He completed his BFA at the Massachusetts College of Art, Boston, in 1984. He is often grouped together with other American photographers who use a diaristic style, such as Nan Goldin and Marc Morrisroe (1959–89). Like Goldin and other contemporary photographers such as Wolfgang Tillmans and the American Collier Schorr (b 1963), Pierson concentrates on ambiguity of gender and on evoking an emotional resonance through his images. Approaching photography in a pictorialist and painterly fashion, he uses techniques of over-exposure and colour saturation to give his images an atmosphere of a scene located in the subconscious rather than in any specific place. His image repertoire focuses mainly on men, flowers, landscapes and city scenes. His work of the 1980s reflects his displaced life at the time, while he was living on the road in motels and moving from city to city. ...


Klaus Ottmann

(b Panama Canal Zone, Aug 6, 1949).

American painter, sculptor, and photographer. An enigmatic, tight-lipped artist whose biography consists mostly of fictional accounts, he is best known for his Cowboys series (1980–84), photographic appropriations of Marlboro cigarette advertisements that glorified the American West. Prince may have gotten the idea to create collages and rephotographed ‘copies’ of existing images while he was working in the Time-Life Building in New York in the 1970s, cutting texts out of magazines for copywriters. Works made during the 1980s also include the Gangs series, rephotographed images of biker girls and fashion models, usually framed (or ‘ganged’ together) in groups of nine or twelve. Together with Sherrie Levine, Prince constituted the second generation of appropriation artists (after Elaine Sturtevant and Richard Pettibone (b 1938) who began appropriating works by Pop artists in the 1960s), as part of the so-called ‘pictures generation’.

In the late 1980s Prince began making Joke...


Mitra Monir Abbaspour

(b Chbanieh, June 15, 1967).

Lebanese conceptual artist, photographer, video and performance artist active also in America. Raad received his BFA in photography from the Rochester Institute of Technology in 1989, and completed his MA and PhD in Cultural and Visual Studies at the University of Rochester in 1993 and 1996, respectively, and in 2002 became an associate professor at the Cooper Union School in New York. History and its representation, narration, and memory are the central themes of Raad’s work. His experience of the Lebanese wars between 1975 and 1991 and their ongoing effects inform his inquiries into the methods of historical documents.

Raad began contending with narratives of the Lebanese wars in a series of short video documentaries that included Up to the South (1993)–a collaboration with Lebanese artist Jayce Salloum (b 1958)—and Missing Lebanese Wars (1996). Characteristic of his later practice, these videos critically employ a genre (documentary film) associated with factual reportage, foregrounding the relationship between subject and method of the work....


Mary Panzer

(b Brooklyn, NY, Dec 30, 1909; d Buffalo, NY, Jan 18, 2011).

American documentary photographer. Born in New York City, son of Jewish immigrant shopkeepers, he received an optometry degree from Columbia University in 1931. Like many of his generation, Rogovin joined the Communist Party. He moved to Buffalo, NY, in 1938 and opened an optometry practice while working for the labour movement and against the rise of Fascism in Spain. In 1942 he married, bought his first camera, and was drafted by the US Army. Three years later, back in Buffalo, Rogovin’s political activities continued until a 1957 summons by the US House of Representatives’ Un-American Activities Committee made him ‘Buffalo’s Number One Red’. In the summer of 1958, a music professor from the State University College in Buffalo asked Rogovin to photograph while he recorded the services in an African American storefront church (see fig.). Inspired by the experience, and remembering the work of Lewis W(ickes) Hine, Rogovin saw a new way to honour poor and working people. He photographed Buffalo’s storefront churches for three years, with support from Minor White at the Rochester Institute of Technology. In ...


Annie Dell’Aria

(b Erie, PA, 1951; d Aug 10, 2013).

American photographer, writer and critic. Sekula’s practice is firmly rooted in his initial studies at the University of California at San Diego in the midst of the anti-Vietnam War movement, where he took courses with Herbert Marcuse and began to produce politically engaged works. Following his studies in San Diego, Sekula’s emerging practice was often connected to the experience of the working class and understood photography as part of a labor-intensive investigation illuminated by text written by the artist. In addition to providing text to accompany his photographs, Sekula’s critical and theoretical writings on the nature of photography have been widely published and read in scholarly circles. He was a professor of Photography and Media at the California Institute of the Arts and recipient of fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts and Getty Research Center, among others.

In early works such as Meat Mass (1972...


Laura E. Leaper

[Andrés ]

(b New York, NY, Aug 15, 1950).

American photographer. Serrano attended Brooklyn Museum Art School (1967–9). After leaving school he abandoned painting and sculpture for the medium of photography. He is known for his large-format, often offensive images of subjects such as corpses, homeless people, and religious subjects, and for his provocative use of bodily fluids as pictorial elements. His most infamous photograph is Piss Christ (1987), which records a crucifix submerged in a vial of his own urine. During the ‘Culture Wars’ of the 1980s in the USA, his work, along with that of Robert Mapplethorpe, was at the centre of public controversy concerning freedom of artistic expression. Serrano’s subjects addressed relevant social and political issues such as AIDS, religion, racism, and feminism, as well as art historical problems such as realism in photographic representation and the possible interplay between text and image.

Many of Serrano’s works from the late 1980s and 1990s explore his complicated relationship with his Catholic upbringing. As a challenge to orthodox religious images, Serrano placed traditional Catholic subjects in non-traditional settings, as for example in his ...


Véronique Pittolo

revised by Sarah Parsons

(b Glen Ridge, NJ, Jan 19, 1954).

American photographer. While growing up Sherman was drawn to the television environment of the 1960s and fascinated by disguise and make-up. She studied art at Buffalo State College, NY (1972–6), concentrating on photography. Throughout her long career, Sherman has employed the same basic working method: working alone, she creates characters and mise-en-scènes through make-up and costumes, nearly always using herself as a model. The resulting photographs are not considered self-portraits and are almost always untitled.

Sherman rapidly rose to celebrity status in the international art world during the early 1980s with the presentation of her series Untitled Film Stills in various group and solo exhibitions across America and Europe (see fig.). Among 130 black-and-white ‘film stills’ made between 1978 and 1980 are portraits of Sherman that recall the types of roles played by women in ‘B’ movies of the 1940s and 1950s, and by such screen idols as Sophia Loren and Marilyn Monroe. In other early series, such as ...


Tom Williams

(b New York, NY, Oct 8, 1947).

American photographer. Shore began making photographs at the age of 6, when he was given a Kodak dark room kit for his birthday and, although he never pursued a formal art education, he was exposed to the contemporary art world between 1965 and 1967, when he acted as an unofficial photographer of the vibrant subculture of Andy Warhol’s West 47th Street studio (known as The Factory). He later became widely known for his photographs of the western landscape and vernacular subjects as well as for his pioneering use of colour. In 1982 Shore became the director of the photography programme at Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson, NY.

In the late 1960s Shore distinguished himself from many contemporary modernist photographers by his interest in conceptual art’s distinctively amateurist approach to the medium. He was particularly influenced by Ed(ward Joseph) Ruscha’s famous photographic books that addressed the unremarkable manifestations of post-war development by chronicling the unpretentious façades of strip malls and the desolate expanses of empty parking lots. During the early 1970s Shore applied this sensibility in a series of photographs that chronicled his cross-country driving tour of the USA from New York to the American West. In these photographs he applied a snapshot sensibility to vernacular subjects such as storefronts, suburban houses, and billboards. They addressed the nondescript and undistinguished manifestations of the American scene rather than its most celebrated landmarks or expansive western terrain. These works were particularly influential not only for their everyday sensibility, but also for embracing colour photography, a technique that was previously rejected as unsophisticated and unaesthetic by modernist photographers. In subsequent years he experimented with a wide array of techniques, including periodic returns to black-and-white photography, and expanded his range of subject-matter to include extended studies of the gardens of Claude Monet at Giverny, for example, or views from airplane windows....


Tom Williams

(b Far Rockaway, NY, Oct 3, 1949).

American photographer and film maker. She graduated with a BFA from the Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia in 1971, and she moved to New York in 1973. During the early 1970s, she developed an interest in photography as a response to both Conceptual art and Pop art, and her subsequent photographs have featured elaborately staged scenes using dolls, puppets, and dummies that often have an uncanny psychological resonance. She is often grouped within the so-called ‘Pictures Generation’ that also includes such artists as Barbara Kruger, Richard Prince, and Cindy Sherman. Like many artists of this generation, she often appropriates media imagery and clichés in an effort to subvert their conventional operations or demonstrate their underlying ideological significance. In recent years, she has turned to film-making with an elaborate musical entitled The Music of Regret.

In many of her early photographs, Simmons photographed dollhouses, occasionally with the dolls in them, to suggest the formulaic illustrations in housekeeping magazines or Dutch paintings of domestic interiors. In many of these works, the subtle disparities in scale and proportion alert the viewer to the artificiality of the world represented and raise questions about the veracity of the photograph itself. At the same time, these works parody the ideals of 1950s domesticity that these toys embody. In this sense, her early work critiques both photographic realism and the stereotypes that such photographs often display. In her ...