Lay Flat 01: Remain in Light

I am equally as excited about the new issue of Shane Lavalette's Lay Flat 01: Remain in Light as most of the bloggers: Shane Lavalette's Journal, Asian Photography Blog, and Hey Hot Shot. What initially prompted my purchase was the title of Cara Phillips essay The Secessionists Revisited: Artist Collectives in the Age of the Blog and an excerpt of the essay from my friend Darius Himes that I found on his blog. You can see images from the magazine like the one here titled Picnics #1, 2007 — from the series Picnics 2007 by Hiroyo Kaneko at Flak Photo. Andy Adams is offering up a few until February 27. You can place an order now at layflat.org and I believe the issue is shipping around March 1, 2009.


Through the Lens: Creating Santa Fe Website is Finally Live

The website for the Through the Lens: Creating Santa Fe is finally live with a description of the exhibition, a list of all photographers, thumbnails and enlargements of all the photos included in the show, video interviews and a schedule for related events and lectures and most importantly a list of sponsors and other contributors.

Two New Books: Landmasses and Railways and The Plan

From Landmasses and Railways

J&L books has just released their newest book Landmasses and Railways by Bertrand Fleuret and will soon release The Plan by Michael Schmelling. Both of the books have limited editions.

From The Plan

Grant and Calls for Entry

-kl photo awards for contemporary portraiture. Deadline is March 1.

-Burn Magazine has announced a $10,000 grant for an emerging photographer. Deadline is March 15, 2009.

-Paraphrase, juried by John H. Lawrence, director of museum programs at the Historic New Orleans Collection. Deadline is August 22, 2009.

Call for sumissions: Humble Postcard Project
Humble Arts accept submissions on a rolling basis. Photographers interested in submitting to Humble's Postcard Project can visit the Humble Arts Foundation website.

Alec Soth is Mean-Spirited?

I attended a lecture a few nights ago at University of New Mexico where Alec Soth was the featured speaker. During the course of the lecture, Alec discussed his work and also brought up a variety of interesting topics directly and indirectly connected with his work. At one point, he said that one fellow Magnum photographer, who I will not mention here, viewed his work as mean-spirited. He left this description with very little detail in the beginning, but when he reached a particular image, he said this is the one that sparked the comment.

The image in question, Michele and James 2004, from the Niagara series is one of a middle aged white couple sitting nude on a burgundy sofa with burgundy carpet below their naked toes. She is guarded with one leg and arm reaching across her body resting on her lover and covering all of her intimated parts. The man lovingly places his arm on her lower back as she rests upon his chest and gazes down to the floor. She is bleached blonde, tan, and full-bodied. Her partner is large, redheaded and pale with a few visible sores on his lower torso. His penis rests between his large legs. He softly stares into the camera with a very receptive and unsuspicious tilt of his head. He emits a sense of pride in his partner and himself visible with his posture.

This delicated and intimate moment usually shared only between couples is now presented to the world. Alec states that portraiture is more of a photo of the space between the one how resides behind the camera and the subject in front. Photographers are agressive beings by nature: we shoot and we take. Can we take at will without any thought of the ramifications? Where does the responsibility of the photographer end and the responsibility of the sitter begin? Is the photographer ultimatley responsible for what contemporary society, and ultimately posterity, will think of the work? How can you control how your audience will perceive your photographic intent and should you even bother?

In a post lecture conversation totally unrelated to the topic mentioned above, Alec mentioned that there was a Little House on the Prairie that he had recently seen with a dwarf named Lou (who also happened to be a circus performer). Although it might have been perceived by some at the time of airing in October of 1982 to be acceptable, it is not so kosher in 2009. The producers of this episode were responding to the contemporary society. The photographer who commented on Alec's image is of another generation and is responding to the work according to his own set of values. Just speculating (and maybe defending), as I do not know if this particular photo sparked the comment or just exaserbated the perception of his work as a whole, but maybe the labeling of "mean-spirited" by the unmentioned photographer shows a certain acceptable predjudice in society today. Not all will look at this photo in this light and who knows how the future generations will judge his intent.


Save College of Santa Fe and Santa Fe Art Institute

Dear Friends of the Santa Fe Art Institute,

As most of you know, the Santa Fe Art Institute sits on the campus of the College of Santa Fe, and as such, we are directly affected by the potential acquisition of the college by a state institution of higher education. Although we raised the funds to build our beautiful Ricardo Legoretta building and we have carefully maintained it for the last ten years, we do not own it. The SFAI building belongs to the College of Santa Fe. The SFAI is an independent 501(c)3, not affiliated with the college in any way except by location. If CSF is not acquired by NM Highlands through the NM Dept of Higher Education, they will declare bankruptcy and we will lose our building - our home. We would find ourselves having to relocate and reorganize all of our administration and programming at enormous energy and expense.

The following message is from the college and I'm urgently asking that friends of the SFAI take action on our behalf. So read on...

House Bill 577 goes to the House Education Committee on Friday morning at 8am.

1) Please take 2 minutes right now to email the House Education Committee members.

Here is a sample email that you can copy and paste into your email. Or, feel free to revise and make more personal if you have the time.

I am writing to the members of the House Education Committee to express my support for House Bill 577. College of Santa Fe is a crucial component in the economy of the city of Santa Fe and the state of New Mexico. Preserve this educational opportunity for both in-state and out-of-state students.

Thank you,

Your Name
City, St Zip

House Education Committee Members:
(please note that Rep. Rhonda King does not have an email address)
Representative Rick Miera - (D) Chair, rbmiera@comcast.net
Representative Rhonda S. King - (D) Vice Chair, (505) 986-4438
Representative Nora Espinoza - (R) Member, noralee@cableone.net
Representative Mary Helen Garcia - (D) Member, maryhelen.garcia@nmlegis.g
Representative Thomas A. Garcia - (D) Member, ocate@hotmail.com
Representative Karen E. Giannini - (D) Member, nmhousedistrict30@live.com
Representative Jimmie C. Hall - (R) Member, jimmie.hall@nmlegis.gov
Representative Dianne Miller Hamilton - (R) Member, dianne38john4132@zianet.com
Representative Dennis J. Roch - (R) Member, denroch@hotmail.com
Representative Sheryl Williams Stapleton - (D) Member, sheryl.stapleton@nmlegis.gov
Representative Jack E. Thomas - (D) Member, jpkthomas@prodigy.net

If you would like to email the entire committee, here are just the email addresses for you to copy and paste:
rbmiera@comcast.net; noralee@cableone.net; maryhelen.garcia@nmlegis.gov; ocate@hotmail.com; nmhousedistrict30@live.com; jimmie.hall@nmlegis.gov;
dianne38john4132@zianet.com; denroch@hotmail.com; sheryl.stapleton@nmlegis.gov;

2) Email this to your personal contacts and ask your friends and neighbors in NM to do the same.
Thank you, in advance, for your help.
Michelle Laflamme-Childs
Residency & Marketing/PR Director
Santa Fe Art Institute

Going to See Alec Soth Tonight in Albuquerque

Alec Soth will be speaking on the campus of the University of New Mexico at 5:30 pm February 19th in the George Pearl Hall auditorium (the new architecture building across the street from Frontier Restaurant.)

The lecture is part of the Robert Heinecken Memorial Lecture Series.


Call for Entry: Italian Photography Books

Images above from Dusha - Russian Soul by Davide Monteleone, Winner from 2008

After the great success of the previous edition this year FotoGrafia - Festival Internazionale di Roma presents the second edition of the Prix-FotoGrafia Book dedicated to Italian photographic publishing — publishers independent and not, publishing groups or collective — for the works published during this calendar year.
The goal of Prix FotoGrafia-Book is to identify and reward the best editorial photography.

The jury composed of five experts from the world of contemporary photography will judge the work.
Books will only be accepted if published in Italy between March 1, 2008 and March 1, 2009.

The first winner will receive a photo exhibition during the 2010 edition of FotoGrafia. The winner will be announced during the inaugural day of FotoGrafia 09.

To Enter:
Send two copies of the book, one for the library of the Festival and one for the display and judging, by March 3 2009 to

FotoGrafia-Libro Zoneattive Srl Viale di Porta Ardeatina, 55 - 00154 Roma

The website is for the 2008 festival. For more information on this year's call for work,

Deadline for receipt of book in Rome is March 3, 2009


Tonight in Santa Fe and Five Other Photo Exhibits Still Showing

Two great openings will take place tonight in Santa Fe:

Zane Bennett Gallery at 435 Guadalupe Street will be exhibiting Open Photography Project with works by
Jonathan Blaustein, Diana Blok, Grégoire Cheneau, Wei Meng Foo, Todd Hido, George Hirose, Patti Levey, Judy Miller, Deborah Oropallo, Tony Soulie, and Donald Woodman. The opening reception is from 5 to 7 pm with and artist's talk and book signing by Todd Hido at 6pm.

At the Marion Center for Photographic Arts at the College of Santa Fe, The Valley: Six Albuquerque Photographers with Leigh Anne Langwell, Patrick Nagatani, David Ondrik, Cecilia Portal, Adrienne Salinger and Jeff Willis
and curated by David Leigh. The exhibition runs through April 24th. For more info, call 505.472.6341 Photo credits starting from top and counter clockwise: Cecilia Portal, Carne Hueso #20; Adrienne Salinger, Porn Kid and Jeff Willis, Wires.

Three other photo exhibits still showing in Santa Fe:
Monroe Gallery presents and exhibition on The City of New York

Verve Gallery of Photography showcases the lensless photography of Martha Casanave and solar plate etchings of Laurie Archer

Portrait and Place: Contemporary Latin Photography at Eight Modern
231 Delgado Street

Endangered Cultures: Galisteo Basin Photography Project at photo-eye, 376 Garcia Street

Through the Lens: Creating Santa Fe at The Palace of the Governors and Through the Lens: Contemporary Santa Fe, Santa Fe Community College