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The Camera and the Artist in Modern and Contemporary Art

  • 02/25/2017
  • 2:00 PM - 3:15 PM
  • 550 N Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs, CA 92262

A Desert Art Center Art Enrichment Program

The Camera and the Artist in Modern
and Contemporary Art
A Talk with Photographer Linda Lowell

Saturday, Feb. 25, 2017
2:00 PM - 3:15 PM
Cost: Free
Location: DAC Auditorium

Photographer Linda Lowell will give a 45 minute talk with questions and answers. Light refreshments will be served.


Linda owned and operated a design/photo studio on Cape Cod for 13 years and then went back to grad school, eventually moving to California to teach at Brooks Institute of Photography for 7 years. She then accepted a job offer as Director of Graduate MFA Photography at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco for two years. Currently she is head of the Graphic Design & Photography Department in the Fine Arts Division at Santa Barbara City College and has enjoyed putting her mark on the development of this program since 2001.

Linda's education includes an undergraduate BFA degree from Tufts University and the Museum School in Boston, graduate MS degree in Photography from Brooks Institute of Photography and graduate studies in both Fine Arts and Counseling Psychology (Lesley College).

Artist Statement:
For 100 years artists relegated photography to a mechanical craft due to it’s reproducibility and archival qualities. The term ‘art form’ was not associated with photography until late nineteenth and early twentieth century beginning with Pictorialism though it’s ‘value’ has not matched paintings and other traditional art until the early twenty-first century (MoMA paid 9 Million for the Film Stills - 69 b/w 5x7’s by Cindy Sherman; a single image - Untitled #96 sold for 3.89 million). In 2014, Peter Lik’s image Phantom sold for 6.5 Million. But still the perceived lower value of photography vs. painting has lingered and a status of Country Cousin (not as good as…) was not replaced UNTIL the Digital Revolution in Photography too hold in a dominant way this century. Elitists in the art world today still maintain that digital photography is not an art form because photographers no longer process their film or create silver-based prints - the archival argument still reigns.

Like the ‘hidden’ resistance to photography as an art form in the 19th and 20th centuries, Digital Photography is the new kicking boy of the art world. Cries of too many filters and automated camera systems that guarantee accurate exposure and focus diminish the sense of value for this medium are similar to the (feigned) resistance (feigned) of 19th artists … though many have been revealed as users of the medium to create studies for their paintings (w/o credit to the medium AND with outright denial that photography was used to assist them in their creations).

I strongly resist these statements and believe that Digital Photography (when advanced as an original medium) today is the Impressionism of the Salon de Refusés Era (1893). It has more truly unique and creative variations than any earlier form of photography - especially when artists apply their own sense of mixed media (digital or analog) with digital applications and rivals or expands beyond any other expressive art forms today.


550 N. Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs, CA 92262  ●  PH: (760) 323-7973    info@desertartcenter.org

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