Timken Lecture Hall, California College of the Arts, San Francisco
British photographer Paul Graham returns to the Larry Sultan Visiting Artist Program to discuss three bodies of work made in the United States between 1998 and 2011, American Night (1998–2002), a shimmer of possibility (2004–06), and The Present (2009–11). These series operate as an informal trilogy, linked not only by common subject matter, but also by underlying issues such as racial and social inequality, the texture of everyday life, and the nature of sight, perception, and photography itself. These three series have been united in the exhibition The Whiteness of the Whale, on view at Pier 24 Photography through February 29th, 2016. This exhibition marks Pier 24 Photography’s first single-artist presentation and the only time a shimmer of possibility has been presented in its entirety.
Over the past three decades, Paul Graham has traveled widely, producing thirteen distinct bodies of work. He has published a dedicated monograph for nearly every series, most famously his twelve-volume collection entitled a shimmer of possibility. This book was honored with the 2011 Paris Photo Book Prize for the most important photography book published in the past 15 years.
Graham has been the subject of more than 80 solo exhibitions worldwide. In 2001, photographs from his series Paintings were included in the exhibition, Plateau of Humankind, as part of the 49th Venice Biennale. In 2003, American Night was exhibited at P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, and in 2009, a shimmer of possibility was exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. In 2011, the Museum Folkwang, Essen and the Whitechapel Gallery in London mounted Paul Graham: Photographs 1981-2006, a twenty-five-year survey of the artist’s work. Graham is the recipient of numerous honors and awards, including the 2009 Deutsche Börse Photography Prize and the 2012 Hasselblad Foundation International Award, considered to be photography’s highest honor.
Note: A 30 minute book signing for Paul Graham’s new catalog The Whiteness of the Whale will follow directly after the lecture. Due to the time constraint, the signing will be reserved for this book only.
Larry Sultan Visiting Artist Program
Pier 24 Photography is pleased to present the Larry Sultan Visiting Artist Program in collaboration with California College of the Arts and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Each year, the Larry Sultan Visiting Artist Program brings six photographers, writers, and curators to San Francisco to offer free and open lectures, and to work one-on-one with students at California College of the Arts.
Larry Sultan Photography Award
Fall 2018 Residency
Headlands Center for the Arts, Sausalito, CA
Click HERE for more information on the Larry Sultan Photography Award
Photographer Bieke Depoorter (b. 1986, Belgium) travels the world to find her subjects, creating extraordinarily intimate photographs that straddle portraiture, documentary, and fiction. The relationships she creates with those she photographs are the key to her work. As Depoorter describes it, “The relationships I establish with my subjects are the foundation of my artistic practice…. The resulting stories are always partially mine, partially theirs.”
In her early work, Depoorter traveled to far-flung locales in Russia, Egypt, and the United States, befriending locals to photograph. She asked her subjects if she could spend the night in their homes, building rapport and trust that eventually allowed her to capture the mundane, routine, ordinary moments of their lives. Depoorter’s first such project, Ou Menya, documented her encounters in the homes of locals in Russia. She completed a similar, long-term project in the United States titled I am about to call it a day.
In As It May Be, a project photographed in Egypt beginning just after the revolution in 2011, she tried to find trust in a time of turmoil and suspicion, in an environment where private life is often shielded. With this project, she also started to question her use of the photographic medium. Conscious of her status as an outsider, she returned to Egypt in 2017 with the first draft of the book, inviting others to write comments directly on the photographs. Contrasting views on country, religion, society, and photography arise among people who would otherwise never engage in a dialogue with one another. In Sete#15 (2015) and the short film Dvalemodus (2017), she began to conceive of her subjects as actors, projecting her own fictional narratives onto her subjects’ factual environments, thereby blurring the line between her world and theirs. In her most recent projects, such as the ongoing project Agata (2017), Depoorter works even more collaboratively with her subjects.
She has published four books, and her work has been shown in the United States and Europe, including Photomuseum The Hague, The Netherlands and an upcoming exhibition at FOMU Antwerp, Belgium. She joined the Magnum agency as a nominee in 2012 and a full member in 2016. She is the recipient of the Magnum Expression award and the Prix levallois, among other accolades.
Depoorter lives and works in Ghent, Belgium.