December 15, 1996

Harold E. Edgerton Photography Exhibition

 

A Gallery For Fine Photography, presents

 

Stopping Time,

the original photographs of

Dr. Harold E. Edgerton

 

Harold E. Edgerton (1903, Fremont, Nebrasca – 1990, Boston), professor at MIT, is the inventor of the electronic flash. He was also a photographer. Harold Edgerton devoted his career to recording what the unaided eye cannot see. His photographs illustrate such moments as: a bullet seen the instant it explodes through an apple or a perfect coronet formed by a milk-drop splash. These photographs have become classics of modern art and science.

Dr. Harold Edgerton was the first to take high-speed color photographs and was a pioneer of multiflash and microsecond imagery, which he used to take detailed photographs of humming birds in motion, as well as the progression of athletes' movements. These wondrous images have shown nobody was never able to see before in photographs that are as remarkable for their precision as for their beauty.

December 26, 1996 - January 31, 1997

 

A GALLERY FOR FINE PHOTOGRAPHY

322 Royal Street

New Orleans, LA 70117

www.agallery.com

December 11, 1996

Live Picture' Internet Imaging Solution for Web Site

HP and Live Picture deliver solution for viewing and printing high quality digital images at image.hp.com Hewlett-Packard (HP) and Live Picture Inc. (LPI) announces the arrival of the Imaging for Internet Web site, a solution designed to demonstrate how viewing, sharing and printing high-resolution images from the Internet can be fast and easy. The site allows content developers, individuals and businesses to display photo-rich content, such as clothing catalogs, famous photographs, news magazines and more. It also enables users to download the Imaging for Internet technology, allowing them to easily view, send and print digital photos from the Internet. "We believe the Imaging for Internet solution will create new business opportunities for companies - allowing content such as catalogs, brochures, stock imagery, real-estate and personal photography to be easily shared over the Internet," said Blake Miller, HP Internet Hardcopy Manager. "Our goal is to work with individuals, businesses and content developers to grow the site into a popular consumer resource." The web page includes content samples from early Imaging for Internet developers, including: - Corbis Corporation Photo Collection - selections from the Corbis Digital Archive, which features more than 1 million images from award-winning photographers, museums and private collectors worldwide. - Bullock & Jones Catalog - content from recent men's clothing catalogs (with links to the respective Web sites for ordering information). Users can zoom in to view merchandise in fine detail before ordering. - U.S. Geological Survey - digital aerial photos of San Francisco - comparing 1946 and 1993 images of the city's landscapes. The Imaging for Internet solution, originally unveiled at the Seybold Conference & Exposition in September 1996, is part of an ongoing HP commitment to make Internet printing simple and easy. Most Internet protocols are not conducive to printing because the Internet was designed with viewing, not printing in mind. HP is working with industry partners Microsoft and Netscape to fix some of the fundamental Internet printing problems, including page formatting and font printing. The Imaging for Internet Web page is currently in public beta version with the first product release scheduled for early 1997. "The beta phase allows HP and LPI to expose content developers and consumers to the performance breakthroughs of this new imaging technology," said Miller. "Based on the feedback we receive, we will grow the site to include more image-rich content and links to interesting sites." Most images on the Web today are available in file formats (typically GIF or JPEG) that have limited resolutions. These images may appear acceptable on the monitor, but often appear lackluster and murky when printed. Often, even when higher-resolution images are available, they can take a very long time to display or print. This slowness and poor print quality has deterred users from downloading and printing Web-based images. The Imaging for Internet solution uses Flashpix, the award-winning photo-imaging file format and imaging architecture co-developed by Eastman Kodak, HP, LPI and Microsoft announced at 1996 COMDEX Spring. Flashpix enables Imaging for Internet digital images to be viewed and printed at high resolution with minimal impact on downloading time. "Live Picture is dedicated to providing Internet users with high-quality imaging solutions," said John Sculley, president and CEO of Live Picture, Inc. "The Imaging for Internet solution extends the benefits of the rich Flashpix technology we developed with HP, Kodak and Microsoft. We expect that this solution will revolutionize the way in which both consumers and professionals use imaging on the Internet." The new Internet Imaging protocol, a collaboration between HP, Kodak, LPI, Microsoft and Netscape, enables the fast, easy transmission of on-line images by allowing developers to integrate Flashpix technology into their network solutions. An Open System for Content Developers: The Imaging for Internet solution, based on open technologies, provides a solid architectural basis for a new, emerging class of commercial image applications. HP and LPI expect to provide developer information for the Imaging for Internet solution in early 1997, including the following: - a specific "developer tools" support section on the Imaging for Internet Web site to provide technical information and answer developer questions through a "chat" feature - a software developer kit containing technical information needed to write to the Imaging for Internet solution. The Imaging for Internet solution consists of both client and server software components and the new Internet Imaging protocol. Together, these technologies allow Internet users to view images quickly and print using the full resolution of their printer. The client software consists of a plug-in module that works with leading Internet browsers and an image gallery that allows users to view, print, store and return to images on the Web. For example, family members could upload pictures to the Internet via a family Web site, and another family member across the country could download the same image and print it - all at photo-quality resolution. The server module is designed for use by both commercial Internet provider and in-house Intranets. This module comes in two types: a Common Gateway Interface module that can be installed in any HTTP Web server and a Netscape API (NSAPI module), which is designed to provide better performance under Netscape software. HP will hold live demonstrations of the Imaging for Internet solution during the Internet World conference in New York.

November 2, 1996

Roy DeCarava: A Retrospective, LACMA - Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Roy DeCarava: A Retrospective
Los Angeles County Museum of Art
November 14, 1996 - January 26, 1997

The largest and most comprehensive survey ever devoted to the works of Roy DeCarava, one of the central figures in postwar American photography, opens at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art on November 14, 1996. Roy DeCarava: A Retrospective spans DeCarava's oeuvre, from his groundbreaking pictures of everyday life in Harlem, through the civil rights protests of the early 1960s, to recent lyrical studies of nature. The exhibition includes a generous selection of Roy DeCarava's landmark photographs of jazz legends Billie Holiday, Milt Jackson, John Coltrane, and many others.

Born in New York City in 1919, DeCarava is known as one of the leading American photographers of his generation. Roy DeCarava: A Retrospective spans nearly half a century of the artist's work through some 200 black-and-white photographs made from the late 1940s through the mid-1990s. Presented in chronological order, the exhibition will also explore continuities of style and theme by juxtaposing works that span decades.

On the occasion of the exhibition, Roy DeCarava stated, "Images and the making of images have been and are still central to me as a person and to my growth as an artist. Photography is the best way I know of to express my concerns and my values. Exhibiting and publishing the work are ways of sharing and confirm my belief in the power of art to illuminate and transform our lives."

Tim Wride, LACMA's assistant curator of photography, said, "The museum is very committed to collecting and exhibiting photography, and this exhibition is important because it shows the broadest possible range of an artist's trajectory through his personal discovery of photography and what is photographic through his use of that medium to evoke the emotions and passions that are so much a part of his life."

Roy DeCarava's gentle, intimate pictures of domestic life in Harlem were first published in 1955 in The Sweet Flypaper of Life, with text by poet Langston Hughes. Roy DeCarava made many of the pictures after winning a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1951--the first awarded to an African-American photographer--which allowed him to spend a full year photographing daily life in Harlem. The pictures brought a new gentleness and intimacy to photography, creating an image of everyday experience that is at once tender and unsentimental.

Trained as a painter and printmaker, Roy DeCarava turned to photography in the late 1940s and quickly mastered the vocabulary of the small, hand-held camera, which was rapidly becoming the hallmark of advanced American work.

Organized by The Museum of Modern Art, New York, the exhibition is arranged by recurrent theme and motif (as well as chronologically), and will include a number of pictures that have not been shown previously.

Exhibition Highlights In Man coming up subway stairs (1952), one of several subway pictures in the exhibition, an exhausted worker stands for all working men at the end of the day. Also exemplary of Roy DeCarava's metaphoric bent is Hallway (1953), in which an inhumanly narrow passage is described both as a haunting instance of "the economics of building for poor people" and as a thing of beauty.

In 1956 he embarked on an extensive series of jazz musicians. Many of the jazz pictures, such as Coltrane on soprano (1963), show individuals absorbed in the act of creation. Others, such as Billie Holiday and Hazel Scott at party (1957), are warm and affecting portraits. Together with photographs of Langston Hughes, Paul Robeson, Norman Lewis, and others, these portraits form an important body within Roy DeCarava's work.

In the early 1960s, Roy DeCarava's work grew more tough-minded in its response to racial discrimination, notably in pictures of laborers in New York's garment district and of civil rights protests. Mississippi freedom marcher, Washington, D.C. (1963), made at the historic March on Washington, exemplifies the photographer's instinct for isolating essential detail. Instead of attempting to encompass the vast event, Roy DeCarava's picture enters into the spirit of the March, distilling a collective determination and hope in the expression of a single face.

A life-long New Yorker, Roy DeCarava has tended to photograph close to home, making from his immediate environment the expansive world of his art. Within these parameters, his art has continued to evolve, as a group of pictures from the mid-1980s attests. Roy DeCarava's hand-camera style rejects artificial light as an intrusion upon experience and thus accepts deep shadow and blur as marks of authenticity. Beginning in 1985, Roy DeCarava elaborated this principle in pictures whose long exposures make the blur of motion an active stylistic device. In these photographs, the sensuousness that Roy DeCarava earlier had accorded to individual figures is transported to the overall field of the image.

LACMA coordinating curator: Tim B. Wride, assistant curator of photography.

Catalogue: Roy DeCarava: a Retrospective, by Peter Galassi, with an essay by Sherry Turner DeCarava; published by The Museum of Modern Art, New York; 280 pp., 237 photo reproductions; hardbound $60, softbound $29.95.

This exhibition, organized by The Museum of Modern Art, New York, and its accompanying publication were supported by a grant from Metropolitan Life Foundation. Additional funding was provided by Agnes Gund and Daniel Shapiro, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

LACMA
lacma.org

October 31, 1996

Mamiya 645 Series 200mm f/2.8 APO Lens

New Mamiya 645 Series 200mm f/2.8 APO Lens 

Mamiya announces its latest addition to the 645 APO lens Series, the new 200mm f/2.8 APO High Speed Telephoto. With the use of ultra-low dispersion glass, the 200mm f/2.8 APO achieves fully corrected color reproduction, high resolution and high speed performance. Optical distortion ratio is only 0.24%. The new high speed telephoto is ideal for sports, photojournalists, fashion and advertising photography. 

Mamiya 200mm f/2.8 APO Lens Specifications 
Optical Construction: 7 elements in 5 groups
Angle of View: 20°
Minimum Aperture: f/22
Diaphragm: Automatic
Focusing: Helicoid
Minimum Focusing Distance: 8 feet = 2.44m
Maximum Magnification Ratio: 0.098 X
Area Covered: 23.2 x 17.2 inches = 589.5mm x 436.8mm
Equivalent Focal Length to 35mm: 124mm
Filter Size: 77mm
Hood: Built-in plus Extension Hood
Dimension (L x W): 5.7 x 3.6 inches = 143.5mm x 91mm
Weight: 38.8 oz. = 1,100g

October 30, 1996

Mamiya Aluminum Compartment Cases

New Mamiya Aluminum Compartment Cases

Mamiya announces three new compartment cases for all Mamiya medium format cameras. The cases feature fully adjustable urethane covered dividers, plastic protected exterior comers, and attractive styling with golden beige aluminum exterior finish. The interior top foam removes to allow access to accessory pockets. Includes carry strap and adjustable dividers. Ideal for carrying and storage of Mamiya equipment. 

Mamiya Compartment Cases Specifications

Mamiya Aluminum Case KM705
Outer dimension: 18 x 13.5 x 6.3 inches = W460 x D344 x H160mm
Inner dimension: 17.3 x 12.8 x4.3 inches = W440 x D325 x H110mm
Weight: 8.1 Lbs. = 3.7kg 

Mamiya Aluminum Case KM706
Outer dimension: 19.8 x14.6 x 7.2 inches = W502 x D371 x H183mm
Inner dimension: 18.5 x 13.8 x 4.5 inches = W470 x D350 x H115mm
Weight; 10.8 Lbs. = 4.9kg 

Mamiya Aluminum Case KM707
Outer dimension: 24.2 x 14.6 x 7.2 inches = W615 x D371 x H183mm
Inner dimension: 22.8 x 13.8 x 4.5 inches = W580 x D350 x H115mm
Weight: 12.6 Lbs. = 5.7kg

October 29, 1996

Mamiya Quick Shoe Tripod Adapter AQ701

Mamiya Quick Shoe Tripod Adapter AQ701 

Mamiya introduces a new Quick Shoe tripod mount for Mamiya RZ and 645 series cameras. It allows fast and secure attachment and removal of camera from any tripod head. The RZ adapter plate features anti-rotation pins matched to Mamiya RZ, RB, 645 and twin lens camera bottoms. Utilizes standard 1/4" tripod socket.

October 6, 1996

Helmut Newton, Polaroids, Galleria Carla Sozzani, Milan

HELMUT NEWTON
Impressions
Polaroids
Galleria Carla Sozzani, Milan
3 October - 10 November 1996

Polaroids. Helmut Newton exhibits his unseen Polaroids to the public for the first time. Taken during a number of sessions since 1989, these are quick snapshots that strike us with immediacy. The polaroid is a technical medium quite congenial to the artist because, as he says, “I’m impatient to see what my photo will look like: I grab the camera […] and simply press the button.” The speed of this photographic process allows him to capture a situation, an expression, a momentary sensation that would lose its spontaneity and freshness with a slower technique, at the same speed as the human eye.

Impressions. 30 ink prints measuring 1.20 m long or high, depending whether the image is horizontal or vertical. None of them has ever been published or exhibited before. They were printed by Helmut Newton by putting together various works of his from different times in his archives in Monte Carlo. Newton says that this project, which began on August 19 and was completed on September 20, 1996, is his most innovative work. They are “impressions” inspired by the quick-fire language of the sexy and sometimes pornographic writing in magazines such as “True Crime” and “True Detective”, or the novels of Chandler and Spillane, whom Helmut Newton admires greatly.

Torsos 1994, 6 silver gelatine prints measuring 1.20 x 1.20 m, exhibited for the first time in Italy. They are imposing nudes inspired by the classical statuary of antiquity and Delamare’s sculptures of the Thirties, full-scale black and white photographs taken in the Nineties featuring bold angles and rigorously white backgrounds that emphasise the clear chiaroscuro of the bodies. In the same room we may admire 2 nude portraits of Kristen McMenamy measuring 1.50 x 1.20 m, which Helmut Newton printed for the first time for this exhibition in Milan.

HELMUT NEWTON

Helmut Newton was born in Berlin in 1920. At the age of 16 he was apprenticed to famous Berlin photographer Yva, renowned for his fashion photos, portraits and nudes. In 1938 he left Germany to live in Singapore, where he worked for the Singapore Straits Times. He then moved to Australia, where he met June Brown: wife, friend, lover, inseparable advisor. They settled in Paris in 1957. In the Sixties and Seventies Newton worked for Nova, Queen and Stern as well as for the French, American, Italian and British editions of Vogue magazine. He held his first solo show in Paris in 1975. He has been presented with numerous awards: the 1976 Art Directors Club of Tokyo award for best photograph of the year and, in 1977-1978, the American Institute of Graphic Arts award for his first book, White Women. In 1978-1979 he was presented with a gold medal by the Art Directors Club of Germany for best news photograph. In 1981 he moved to Monte Carlo. In 1989 he was appointed “Knight of arts and letters” by the French Minister of Culture Jack Lang. In the same year he also received the “Photographers’ Award for Outstanding Achievements and Contributions to Photography During the Sixties and Seventies” from the Photographic Society of Japan. French Prime Minister Jacques Chirac presented him with the “Gran Prix National de la Ville de Paris.” In 1991 he was awarded the “World Image Award” in New York for best photographic portrait, and the following year the German government presented him with a prize and he was appointed “Knight of arts, letters and sciences” by Princess Caroline of Monaco. He has held exhibitions all over the world. He now lives and works in Monte Carlo and Los Angeles. Few famous people today have not been immortalised by his ironic, talented lens: from Catherine Deneuve to Elisabeth Taylor, from Mick Jagger to Jack Nicholson, from Paloma Picasso to Charlotte Rampling. But it is above all his monumental black and white nudes that strike the collective imagination and present a new image of woman that has emerged since the Eighties: cold and confident, dedicated to the cult of the body and aware of her erotic impact. In these shocking images of athletes and amazons we find both the expressive power of the cinema and a decadent opulence bounding upon fetishism, an aggressive and transgressive imagination, a surprising and unmatched elegance. His most famous photographs are marked by the most explicit and the most ambiguous sexuality. Galleria Carla Sozzani presented a series of his portraits of women in 1993 (January 14 to February 27).

Galleria Carla Sozzani
Corso Como 10 - 20154 Milano, Italia
www.galleriacarlasozzani.org

September 27, 1996

Beverly Semmes at Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin

Beverly Semmes: New and Recent Sculpture
Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin
2 October 1996 - 16 February 1997

The first one-person exhibition in Ireland of the work of the American sculptor Beverly Semmes opens to the public at the Irish Museum of Modern Art on Wednesday 2 October. Beverly Semmes: New and Recent Sculpture comprises 10 of Semmes’s characteristically large, dramatic clothing pieces, all created in the last four years, and 10 earlier photoworks of smaller wearable garments. 

Beverly Semmes’s monumental sculptures and her smaller fabric creations are a delightful and provocative fusion of personal fantasy and social commentary. They explore the power of clothing and its ability to influence, and even define the self - who we think we are, how we choose to represent ourselves, and how we are seen and defined. The strangely distorted bodices and elongated arms of Semmes’s dresses, with their profusion of colours and fabrics, present rich psychological terrain. Her exaggeration of clothing forms to surreal extremes, result in sculptural creations that reflect a concern, shared by many contemporary artists, with the politics and psychology of identity. 

Scarlett, 1994 is a typically striking work, a 71/2 foot long ‘dress’ of scarlet crushed velvet with skirt and arms flowing down the gallery wall and spilling luxuriantly onto the floor. In Green Braided Dress, 1992 the collar and shoulders are of a normal, though greatly enlarged, dress, which is then contorted into three pairs of plaits stretching to the ground. Two new works have been made especially for this exhibition. One, Twister, 1996 is one of the first works in which a kinetic element is introduced. In all of the larger, more recent works the human figure is absent - but made all the more visible by its very invisibility. This ‘presence of absence’ resonates throughout Beverly Semmes’s work with both dramatic and telling effect. 

In contrast, the small scale photoworks and film stills each depict a costumed figure, frequently in a landscape with the shapes and textures of their costumes mimicking their surroundings. Figure in the Purple Velvet Bathrobe and Cloud Hat, 1991 depicts a figure standing on a sandy point overlooking the ocean. Her voluminous, purple robe falls in thick folds, like a waterfall or a stream that will lead to the ocean below, while her cloudlike hat is barely distinguishable from the sky. 

Born in Washington, DC, Beverly Semmes lives and works in New York City. Solo exhibitions include shows at the Sculpture Centre, New York, ICA, Philadelphia, Camden Arts Centre, London, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, and the Hirshhorn Museum, Washington, DC, She has shown in many group exhibitions in the US and in Dusseldorf, London, Nova Scotia and Ontario. Her Four Purple Velvet Bathroles was one of the most memorable works in IMMA’s From Beyond the Pale season in 1994-95. 

Irish Museum of Modern Art
Royal Hospital, Military Road, Kilmainham, Dublin 8
www.modernart.ie

September 20, 1996

Agnes Mongan (1905-1996)

 

AGNES MONGAN, IN MEMORIAM

 

Agnes Mongan, a pioneer in the study of drawings and curator emerita of drawings at the Fogg , and the first female director of the Fogg Art Museum, died on Sunday, September 15, at Mount Auburn Hospital in Cambridge. She was 91 and a resident of Cambridge.

During her extraordinary career which spanned six decades, Agnes Mongan had a profound influence on her peers and colleagues, as well as on generations of fine arts students, many of whom went on to become curators in major national museums.

"Agnes Mongan was one of those individuals whose rare qualities and values embody the deepest purposes of an institution," Neil Rudenstine, President of Harvard University, said in a statement. "She was inimitable. She was the soul of intellectual scrupulousness, with the most penetrating sense of absolute standards. She was, in addition, a sympathetic spirit -- gracious, encouraging, and generous. She fixed her keen eye on works of art as objects to be understood in all their detail -- as well as in terms of their vital human and aesthetic effects. She was a scholar, curator, director, connoisseur, teacher, counselor and friend to countless people over the course of many decades in the life of the Fogg Art Museum, the Department of Fine Arts, and the University. We already feel her loss as profoundly as we were -- for so long -- aware of her vital presence."

James Cuno, Elizabeth and John Moors Cabot Director of the Harvard University Art Museums, said in a statement, "Agnes was that rare individual who could combine a high regard for tradition with a love of the new and the exciting. An acknowledged expert on old master drawings and a friend of the new art of her time, especially that of Alexander Calder and Virgil Thompson, she was, in a way, not unlike the work of the artist she most admired and for her scholarly work is best known, the French painter and draughtsman, Jean-August-Dominique Ingres. Like Ingres's work, she offered us a twist on the traditional that was, in the end, more modern than old fashioned. She was, in her tastes, habits, and courage, in no way conventional."

Born in Somerville, Massachusetts in 1905, Agnes Mongan knew at an early age that she loved works of art and that she longed to know more about them. Mongan's father, a family doctor, was determined that she receive the finest education possible and sent her to Bryn Mawr College, where she studied art history and English literature. Upon Agnes' graduation from Bryn Mawr in 1927, Dr. Mongan insisted that she, like his other children, spend a year abroad. Agnes chose to spend her year studying Italian art with a Smith College Seminar; her studies took her to Florence and Paris, and then to points beyond in Northern Italy and Central Europe, affording her opportunities to examine closely works of art in the original, with a particular emphasis not only on their history, but also on their present condition.

Following this remarkable year abroad, Mongan returned to Cambridge where she completed the requirements to receive her Master's Degree from Smith College. In 1929, she also accepted her first position at the Fogg Art Museum as a research assistant under Paul Sachs, cataloguing his collection of drawings. Indeed, Mongan has stated that she owes the development of her career and interest in drawings primarily to Sachs, a 1900 graduate of Harvard College, former banker, and longtime associate director of the Fogg Museum. Under Sachs' supervision, Mongan developed a network of professional and social contacts during her early years at the Fogg and she was granted access to some of the most important private collections in the world. In the following decades, Agnes Mongan became one of the leading connoisseurs of Old Master drawings, and she went on to play a principal role in the history of connoisseurship in this country.

In the 1930s the Fogg collection contained more drawings from France than from any other country, and, perhaps as a result, Mongan's interest in French drawings flourished. Mongan devoted herself to the writing of the catalogue Drawings in the Fogg Museum of Art throughout the '30s; however, she also published numerous articles on individual drawings in the museum's collection, always basing her reporting on accurate scholarship. In addition to her full-time pursuits at the Fogg, Agnes Mongan also spent considerable time exploring her interest in contemporary art. In the 1930s she was one of the founding members of the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston, and she later became involved with the activities of the Museum of Modern Art.

William Robinson, Ian Woodner Curator of Drawings at the Fogg Art Museum, said in a statement, "Agnes Mongan was one of the twentieth century's outstanding scholars in the field of European old master and nineteenth-century drawings. Drawings in the Fogg Museum of Art (1940), written by Miss Mongan and the Fogg's Associate Director Paul J. Sachs, is a work characterized by meticulous description, thorough research, incisive analysis and concise prose, which established a new standard for museum catalogues of drawings.

"As curator of drawings for nearly fifty years, she oversaw the development of the Fogg's holdings from a miscellany of no more than local significance to a comprehensive collection of international renown," Robinson continued. "Several thousand drawings entered the collection during her tenure. They included works acquired in the major gifts and bequests that form the core of the collections as well as drawings she was able to secure with a modest purchase fund that, she liked to recall, usually amounted to about $80 per year. An inspiring teacher, Miss Mongan was also a tireless advocate outside the classroom for her subject. She organized innumerable exhibitions of works from private collections and solo shows of drawings by artists ranging from Ingres to Andrew Wyeth. Her most important exhibition, French Drawings from American Collections: Clouet to Matisse, was seen in Rotterdam, Paris and New York in 1958-1959."

When Grenville Winthrop bequeathed his enormous collection of art to the Fogg Art Museum in 1943, Mongan embarked upon its catalogue. The Winthrop bequest opened a new era in scholarship of French art for Mongan; her area of specialty, originally Italian and French drawings of the sixteenth to the eighteenth centuries, was now extended to include French drawings of the nineteenth century. Cataloguing the Winthrop collection enabled her to devote years to the research of works by French artists other than Degas or Daumier. Specifically it presented an extraordinary opportunity to study the work of Ingres; 35 drawings by Ingres entered the Fogg via the Winthrop bequest. The grace, delicacy, elegance, and precision she admired in French art were strikingly embodied in the drawings by Ingres. In recognition of her growing expertise in French art, she was asked to assist in the cataloguing of the French paintings in the Frick Collection in New York, and it was while she was working on the French paintings at the Frick that Mongan states that she became an "Ingriste."

Agnes Mongan became the first female curator at the Fogg Art Museum in 1947 when Harvard University finally lifted its policy banning women from being appointed curators (until that time, she held the title "Keeper of Drawings"). In 1951, Miss Mongan was appointed assistant director of the Fogg, thereby assuming administrative responsibilities in addition to her established career as a scholar and curator in the drawing department.

Although Miss Mongan taught classes for many years, it wasn't until 1960 that her role in the Department of Fine Arts was acknowledged officially. Her appointment as the Martin A. Ryerson Lecturer in Fine Arts gave formal recognition to her long-standing teaching situation. Mongan always maintained that although the Fogg is open to the public, its primary function is the development of scholars and museum professionals. To this end, she gave freely of her time to all students who displayed a serious interest in drawings, encouraging them, helping them in their projects, and editing and promoting their publications.

Margaret Morgan Grasselli, curator of Old Master drawings, National Gallery of Art, said in a statement, "Miss Mongan's seminars on drawings were legendary and served as the instructional cradle for several generations of curators, connoisseurs, and collectors. Those of us who were fortunate enough to take one of her courses remember fondly her infectious passion for the drawings, the delightful anecdotes she would relate about each one, and especially the traditional trip to New York to visit dealers, exhibitions and private collections. For the students who shared her passion for drawings and were deemed to have an 'eye,' Miss Mongan used her considerable prestige and influence to open doors to life-shaping opportunities."

In 1964 Agnes Mongan's title was changed to associate director, and then in 1968 when John Coolidge retired as director of the Fogg, Miss Mongan was named Acting Director. In 1969, she was appointed director of the museum, placing her among the first female directors of a major museum in the United States. When she took on the job of running the Fogg, times were not favorable for American museums. Private funding was at a minimum, many of the old donors were gone, and the country and the university were preoccupied with the escalating conflict in Viet Nam. In spite of these difficulties, Miss Mongan carried on the museum administration according to traditional practice. As assistant, associate, and then director of the Fogg, Mongan always maintained an active role in the Museum, working on numerous committees and boards, organizing and overseeing social functions of openings and dinners at the Fogg, and traveling abroad to museum meetings and functions.

When Agnes Mongan retired as director of the Fogg in 1971, she retained her title as curator of drawings and continued in that position until 1975. Throughout the 1970s, she received numerous awards, honorary degrees, and accolades including the Merito della Republica Italiana by the Italian government for "her help with the restoration of art following the floods of Florence and her years of work fostering Italian culture." Miss Mongan was also awarded numerous visiting professorships including a visiting directorship of the Timken Art Gallery in San Diego, Edith Kreeger Wolf Distinguished Professor at Northwestern University, Bingham Professor at the University of Louisville, visiting professor at the University of Texas, Kress Professor at the National Gallery of Art (the first woman to hold that position), and visiting professor of fine arts at the University of California at Santa Barbara. Well into the 1980s, Miss Mongan maintained an extremely active schedule of new projects, including presenting lectures nationally and internationally, and writing and editing numerous articles and contributions to Art Museum publications.

In 1994, Ms. Mongan was once again honored at the Harvard University Art Museums, when the Agnes Mongan Center for the Study of Prints, Drawings, and Photographs opened at the Fogg Art Museum. She is the author of the recently published catalogue, David to Corot: French Drawings in the Fogg Art Museum (Cambridge, Harvard University Press), 1996.

 

HARVARD UNIVERSITY ART MUSEUMS

September 17, 1996

September 1, 1996

Fred Sandback at Dia Center for the Arts, New York

Fred Sandback: Sculpture
Dia Center for the Arts, New York
September 12, 1996 - June 29, 1997

American artist Fred Sandback's installation entitled Sculpture, opens to the public at Dia Center for the Arts, 548 West 22nd Street, New York City, on September 12, 1996. The exhibition, located in the second floor gallery, remains on view through June 29, 1997. 

Sculpture is an installation of new works together with older pieces from Dia's extensive collection of Fred Sandback's art. For more than twenty-five years, Fred Sandback has been using linear elements, in particular colored yarns to give physical form, together with impressions of palpability, to the space his work delimits. Defining the boundaries of three-dimensional geometric forms with these minimal means Fred Sandback creates discrete works that co-exist within the continuum of the exhibition space.

Fred Sandback was born in Bronxville, New York in 1943. After studying first philosophy then sculpture at Yale University he moved to New York City where he continues to live and work. Since the late 1960s Sandback has exhibited extensively in the United States and internationally, and his work is represented in the collections of The Museum of Modern Art, New York, The Whitney Museum of American Art, and The National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, among others.

Dia Center for the Arts
www.diacenter.org

Juan Munoz at Dia Center for the Arts, New York

Juan Muñoz: A Place Called Abroad
Dia Center for the Arts, New York
September 26, 1996 - June 29, 1997

Juan Muñoz's installation entitled A Place Called Abroad will open to the public at Dia Center for the Arts, 548 West 22nd Street, New York City, on September 26, 1996.

In creating A Place Called Abroad, Juan Muñoz will transform the 7,500 square foot gallery on Dia's fourth floor into a street-like environment with residual spaces populated by groups of figures. In pursuing his fascination with architecture, Muñoz deconstructs the gallery space, diagonally cutting through existing walls, in order to create a fictional street. Fragments of the pre-existing space remain visible throughout the installation. This overlay of past and present creates a habitat for Muñoz's figures.

In curator Lynne Cooke's 1995 essay for Parkett, Muñoz's figures are described as "withdrawn, absorbed or otherwise distracted" creating a "dislocated dialogue between spectator and artwork." In contrast, Muñoz's newly created figures engage with each other and transform the space into settings for exchange and display.

Juan Muñoz was born in 1953 in Madrid, Spain, where he continues to live and work. Since his first solo show in 1984, Juan Muñoz has exhibited widely. This is his first major one-person show in an American museum.

Major funding for this exhibition has been provided by the Lannan Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Spanish Cultural Ministry, Placido Arango and the members of the Dia Art Council.

Dia Center for the Arts
www.diacenter.org

August 20, 1996

Anna Bernhard Blume Photo-Works - Havard University Museums




ANNA AND BERNHARD BLUME PHOTO-WORKS
Fogg Art Museum and Busch-Reisinger Museum, 
Harvard University Art Museums
September 14 - November 24, 1996

For the past twenty-five years, Anna and Bernhard Blume have created a photographic oeuvre noted for its engaging humor, conceptual rigor and thematic experimentation. Working mainly with staged photographs, printed in black and white and arranged in sequences of varying length and scale, the Blumes offer an unsettling exploration of the place of self in the modern world.

Anna and Bernhard Blume' work, whether in the cooler, more conceptual sequences with text of the 1970s (primarily by Bernhard Blume) or in the more expansive, satirical, and often feminist work of the past fifteen years (executed explicitly as a collaboration), is marked by an ironic humor that is part surreal and part vaudeville. In staging their obviously ficticious scenes, the artists are simultaneously both actors and directors. Anna and Bernhard Blume, both born in 1937, photograph themselves in the stereotyped garb, activity, and expressions of the German lower-middle class, which they acknowledge as part of their own background as Roman Catholics from the Rheinland region.

In these personae, they then interact (seemingly as victims) with the physical and mental fixtures of conventional life. Sometimes, it is chairs, vases, plates and other objects with vestiges of a sacral aura, that appear wildly out of control, with a life and power of their own; at other times, the artists are imposed upon the fixed ideas of culture and thought, such as the German romance with the forest, the pure forms of high modernist art, and other clichés. Informing their work is a playful and profound interest in the history of philosophy, which Bernhard Blume studied at Cologne University from 1967 to 1971. Throughout, as the Blumes slyly undermine certainties about the superiority of human reason, about the stability of the subject/object categories, and about the given social order, the viewer may sense the artists' persistent belief in the power of art's images to prompt a more honest humanity.

The Blumes deploy formal and technical means of great sophistication, with carefully calibrated effects of space, composition and scale. The photographic medium, which itself raises questions about the relationship between passivity (simply recording reality) and activity (subjective creativity), is intricately linked to the issues in the work. As artists who studied at the Dusseldorf Academy from 1960-1965, and there experienced the liberating effects of Joseph Beuys's teaching, the Blumes are of a generation which confronted the challenges of photography, an apparently trivial medium associated with amateur snapshots and mass culture, in their search for creative practice adequate to the late twentieth century.

Anna and Bernhard Blume have been honored with major presentations in Europe, while American audiences have seen only fragmented presentations of their work, including the 1988 Carnegie International, the traveling exhibition Photography in Contemporary German Art: 1960 to the Present, organized by the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, in 1992, and small projects at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. They have also been honored with major presentations at the Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt; Kölnischer Kuntsverein, Cologne; Weiner Sezession, Vienna; and Rheinisches Landesmuseum, Bonn. The Blumes continue to work as a team and independently in Cologne.

This traveling exhibition, organized by the Milwaukee Art Museum, is the first major presentation of the work of the German collaborative artists, Anna and Bernhard Blume. The exhibition is co-coordinated by Dean Sobel, curator of contemporary art, and Tom Bamberger, adjunct curator of photography, both at the Milwaukee Museum of Art. Anna and Bernhard Blume Photo-Works is organized at the Harvard University Art Museums by Peter Nisbet, Daimler-Benz Curator of the Busch-Reisinger Museum. This exhibition is sponsored by Midwest Express Airlines, Inc. Additional funding has been provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency; the Institut fuer Auslandsbeziehungen; and the German American Arts Foundation. The Art Museums' presentation of Anna and Bernhard Blume Photo-Works is made possible by the Friends of the Busch-Reisinger Museum.

Exhibition Catalogue: The accompanying publication is the first English-language catalogue to document the Blumes' work.

Related Events

Lecture and reception - September 17: Special viewing of the exhibition in the Busch-Reisinger and Fogg Museums. Bazon Brock, professor of aesthetics at the University of Wuppertal, Germany, presents a lecture entitled The Serenity of Failure: Anna and Bernhard Blume and an Alternative History of German Avant-Gardism in the Twentieth Century in the Sackler Auditorium. A reception with Bernhard Blume followed the lecture in the Fogg Courtyard.
Gallery talks: September 29 with Deborah Martin Kao, Charles C. Cunningham, Sr., Assistant Curator of Photographs. October 5 with Peter Nisbet, Daimler-Benz Curator, Busch-Reisinger Museum.  October 27 and November 16 with Sara Krajewski, 1996-1997 Werner and Maren Otto Curatorial Intern, Busch-Reisinger Museum.
Lecture - October 24 - To Photograph, to Forget, to Remember: Photographic Practices in Postwar German Art by Benjamin H. D. Buchloh, associate professor of art history, Barnard College/Columbia University.

HARVARD UNIVERSITY MUSEUMS


Anna and Bernhard Blume Photo-Works is a special exhibition on display in the Fogg Art Museum and Busch-Reisinger Museum, Harvard University Art Museums, 32 Quincy Street, Cambridge, Massachusetts from September 14 through November 24, 1996.

July 1, 1996

William S. Burroughs at LACMA, Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Ports of Entry: William S. Burroughs and the Arts
Los Angeles County Museum of Art
July 18 - October 6, 1996

The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) will premiere the exhibition Ports of Entry: William S. Burroughs and the Arts from July 18-October 6, 1996. Organized by the museum, the first-ever retrospective will survey Burroughs's career with 153 works, beginning with his 1960s and early 1970s photocollages, scrapbooks, and his collaborations with Brion Gysin on photomontage "cut-ups". The exhibition will include Burroughs's later shotgun art and recent abstract painting, and will explore how his work has influenced today's cultural landscape, resulting in the absorption of his ideas and routines into newer art, advertising, and current popular culture. On display will be graphic art as well as works produced by Burroughs in collaboration with such artists as David Bradshaw, George Condo, Keith Haring, Robert Rauschenberg, Philip Taafe, and Robert Wilson. Portraits of Burroughs by Allen Ginsberg, Annie Leibovitz, Robert Mapplethorpe, Herb Ritts, and Kate Simon will be on view, and works by other artists will suggest Burroughs's continuing influence.

Robert Sobieszek, curator of photography at LACMA and exhibition curator, commented, "For more than forty years, William Burroughs has been at the center of much of our culture and has exerted a tremendous influence on both literature and the arts, and he continues to be a compelling figure for a younger generation. Wishing to finally rub out the word and the attendant, restrictive logic of language, he turned to the purely pictorial art of photomontage, collage, and ultimately painting."

Born in 1914 in St. Louis, Missouri, author William S. Burroughs is best known for his revolutionary novel Naked Lunch, which was published in Paris in 1959 and banned in the United States until its publication in New York in 1962. As a member of the Beat Generation, Burroughs's cult standing throughout his life has been enhanced by his literary and artistic statements, and by the unconventional and sometimes marginal way he has lived his life. Born into a family made socially prominent by his grandfather's invention of the modern adding machine, he attended private school before enrolling at Harvard, where he studied literature and anthropology.

William Burroughs's first formal artworks may be the calligraphic drawings in the style of Brion Gysin (1916-1986) that he produced for the dust jackets of the first Olympia Press edition of Naked Lunch (1959) and the Grove Press edition of The Soft Machine (1966), as well as some earlier photomontages. Collaborations between Burroughs and Gysin began in 1959 in Paris, though the two had known each other vaguely in Tangier before that time. Gysin, who was more of a painter than a writer, demonstrated to Burroughs the essential pictorial value of the calligraphic form. During the Beat Hotel days in the early 1960s Burroughs admitted that he had never "seen painting" until he saw Gysin's work. When he was asked how he got into the paintings, he replied: "Usually I get in by a port of entry, as I call it. It is often a face through whose eyes the picture opens into a landscape and I go literally right through that eye into that landscape." Otherwise Burroughs confirms that his ideas on painting have been strongly influenced by the Swiss artist Paul Klee.

Images--hieroglyphs, pictographs, photographs, newspaper illustrations, collages, montages, prints, paintings, and film--have held an important if not central position in Burroughs's working methods since Naked Lunch, which used the "cut-up" technique subsequently employed by Burroughs and Gysin in their collaborative works. The first true "cut-ups" were published in Minutes To Go (1960), and Burroughs and Gysin in 1964 collaborated on a folio-sized handwritten manuscript The Cut-ups, whose calligraphic and textual passages are coordinated by colored gridwork. In describing the cut-up method, Gysin stressed that "the cut-up method treats words as the painter treats his paint, raw material with rules and reasons of its own." Burroughs also used the cut-up process on tape recordings beginning in 1961, in Tangier, London, New York, and Paris; and with Antony Balch on moving films (Towers Open Fire, 1963; and Bill and Tony, 1963).

From 1963-72, Burroughs and Gysin collaborated on literary experiments and theoretical articles that they combined into one anthology, The Third Mind. (The total number of artworks created for The Third Mind is unknown; but more than seventy works of art including mechanicals, manuscripts and collages are owned by the museum). Burroughs has often referenced T.S. Eliot as an influence, and a source of the title may be The Wasteland--"Who is the third who walks beside you ?" Each collage employs a loose grid, and the cut-up technique is used when text is involved, as in Plan Drug Addiction (c. 1965), in which the rendering of an anguished man's face is surrounded by typed and cut-up texts mostly concerned with drugs and their criminalization. For William S. Burroughs, everything that controls us is a virus--"junk" included. Permutations (c. 1965) combines snapshots of the authors with two of Gysin's brayer-and-text paintings and one of Burroughs's collages. (Gysin used a printer's brayer to visually enlarge his grids). A blurring of identities did occur in the creative process, though almost every text produced during the collaborations is initialed by its original author. For example Rub Out the Word (c. 1965) combines a typescript of hand-lettered "faux arabic" calligraphic permutations on grids (initialed by Gysin); its transformation into typescript and punctuation marks are initialed "W.B." Other than these, none of the other plates for the edition is initialed or signed.

In 1981, William S. Burroughs moved from New York to Lawrence, Kansas, and began his own experimentations with a process that while not without precedent was remarkably innovative. Like the cut-up, the idea behind Burroughs's shotgun blast paintings is chance operation, where the explosive randomness created by the shotgun blast, and the Zen act of shooting, are valued. The process adopted by Burroughs for such paintings as Traveller on the Yellow Wave (1982) was to place small containers of paint on the wood and shoot at them and the wood at the same time, later collaging photographs to the pieces of plywood. Nearly all of the shotgun paintings function as double-sided works; both the "entry" and "exit" wounds are significant. According to Burroughs, "the shotgun blast releases the little spirits compacted in the layers of wood, causing the colors of the paints to splash out in unforeseeable, unpredictable images and patterns." For Burroughs, no other technique so completely removes constraints on the body and the mind, or offers such ease, liberty, and the prospect of infinity.

Also on view in the exhibition are Burroughs's automatic paintings of the late 1980s. Derived from Gysin and from the Surrealists in Paris, the works are founded on the hallucinatory aspects of painting as a catalyst for provoking dream images that in turn serve the imagination--the paintings, according to Burroughs, bring about the "appearance of the invisible." Finally, Burroughs's Crazy Man (1988) embodies the potential danger that Burroughs sees as central to his work. "I want my painting to literally walk off the goddamned canvas, to become a creature and a very dangerous creature." The strongly mythic cut-out figure, emptied of eyes and mouth--and literally heartless--confronts the viewer with just this presence. As the "invisible man," Burroughs continues to affect popular culture with his art and ideas, collaborating with other artists and participating in such films as Towers Open Fire (1963), Drugstore Cowboy (1989), and Even Cowgirls Get the Blues (1994).

Curator: Robert A. Sobieszek, curator of photography at LACMA

This exhibition was organized by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

Catalogue: Ports of Entry: William S. Burroughs and the Arts, by Robert A. Sobieszek; published by LACMA, dist. by Thames and Hudson; 192 pp.; 98 illus. in color, 112 illus. in black-and-white; softbound $24.95 at the LACMA museum shop.

LACMA - Los Angeles County Museum of Art
www.lacma.org

June 21, 1996

Nikon F5: Focusing Controls and Systems

Nikon F5: Focusing Controls and Systems

Now, Nikon has taken another giant leap forward with the development of the Nikon F5's completely new autofocus system. It combines speed with accuracy and expands the range of performance. Pictures can be accurately focused at motor speeds about 60 percent faster than any other system.

The F5's operation is elegant. Not only is focus fast, but the new technology also provides advancements in more creative composition applications. The photographer has easier, more effective control with a "mouse-like" keypad. Nikon has built the fastest and most accurate AF system ever developed, and it is a tool that most creative professionals will enjoy using.

Meeting the real-world needs of professional photographers in the field, the Nikon F5's system delivers the best performance through the new Multi-CAM 1300 Sensor, a newly designed CPU, a Wide-Cross Array with five detection areas, a wide selection of focusing modes and options, and the delivery of a system that handles high-speed Focus Tracking at up to eight frames-per-second (fps) film advance speed.

Details on these new advances and how they can be used in the field follow. While each aspect of the new AF system is impressive, keep in mind that the integration of these technologies, and the goals they have achieved, are perhaps the most impressive feats of all.

The autofocus (AF) technology designed into Nikon's F5 is geared toward one goal -- giving it the fastest, most versatile and reliable autofocusing system ever. When AF technology first appeared, professional photographers were often reluctant to use it on the job, partly because they mistrusted any technology that took shooting control out of their hands, and partly because AF technology could not meet all the required standards of performance.

The technology evolved through time, and while autofocus began to operate faster, it could not achieve the accuracy that many photographers demanded. Taking more pictures, with expectations that some sharp ones would be found in the collection, became the way many photographers operated. Nikon has always combined speed of operation with accuracy, because in Nikon's view, speed is nothing without accuracy.

Thanks to Nikon Research & Development, speed has evolved to a new level without sacrificing accuracy. In fact, accuracy has been improved with newly developed technology and software design.

The Nikon N90s camera's wide-area cross sensor, combined with Nikon's AF-I Nikkor optics, gave photographers their first glimpse of what was possible with autofocus. They no longer needed to rely on a large quantity of pictures to obtain a certain number in focus. Now, photographers can expect both speed and accuracy. The N90s was a major advancement for professional photography in fast- moving situations.

The F5 Autofocusing Systems

The autofocusing systems in the new Nikon F5 offer photographers the world's fastest and most responsive focusing ever. The newly designed Multi-Cam Autofocus sensor features a Wide Cross-Array with five sensing areas that handle both vertical and horizontal compositions and action.

The performance is astonishing -- accurate autofocus is possible at the camera's fastest framing rate of eight frames-per-second when used with the optional nickel metal hydride power source. Speeds to 7.4 fps are achieved with the standard eight AA alkaline battery pack.

Other factors that add to the performance of the autofocus system include the newly designed CPU that provides enhanced detection speed and accuracy; Nikon's exclusive Dynamic AF mode, which automatically shifts from one focusing area to another to maintain sharp focus on moving subjects; and Focus Tracking with Lock-On,™ a system that anticipates subject movement with a feature that continues to hold focus on subjects even when they may be momentarily blocked or stray from the focus-detection area. Even details such as Nikon's new Mirror Balancer add significantly to the autofocus performance. Multi-CAM 1300 Sensor Module and Wide-Cross Array

The Multi-CAM 1300 sensor module was designed for the F5. It incorporates five AF sensors to create a large, Wide-Area Cross-Type array that provides greater coverage than any other AF system. Action oriented photographers will not be disappointed.

The three horizontal sensors are full-time cross-type sensors, which form a line covering 44% of the horizontal width. Each of the three cross-type sensors incorporates a cross pair for normal focus detection, and a second cross pair for detection in low light. This dual system maximizes AF speed and accuracy under the widest range of light conditions. The top and bottom sensors of the cross-array are line sensors (not cross-type), and together with the center cross sensor of the horizontal line, form a line of sensors which extends vertically, covering 30 percent of the vertical dimension of the viewfinder. Unlike other systems, the cross-type sensors in the Multi-Cam 1300 work full-time with every Nikkor lens, not just with lenses of f/2.8 maximum aperture, but with every AF Nikkor lens -- even those with maximum aperture of f/5.6.

The Wide-Cross array is displayed on the top-panel LCD of the Nikon F5. Within the viewfinder, there is a focus confirmation signal in the LCD area, and an Electrochromic display which defines the five focus detection areas. Additionally, via the Custom Setting operation of the F5, a series of LED signals can be activated, with each signal used to provide an additional indication of the operation of the AF detection areas. The LED "pointers" are located outside the edge of the viewing area, providing an illuminated reference for AF operation. Selection of any one of the five detection areas is made via the Focus Area Selector Keypad on the back of the F5 camera body. The Focus Area Selector Keypad is also provided on the optional Data Back and Multi-Control Backs.

Fast and accurate autofocus operation is achieved through a comprehensive set of features, including a system of micro-electronics and mechanical components. To achieve AF operation at motor speeds up to 8 frames per second requires exceptional precision, critical timing and robust construction.

For the Nikon F5, as a subject's distance changes, the Central Processing Unit, through the focus detection sensors, receives and processes focus status data. High-torque coreless motors with low power consumption drive each lens' AF operation, the shutter and film transport. The F5's mirror plays an important role in AF operation. Using a patented balancer, the F5's reflex mirror is able to move with precision and speed, and with no meaningful mirror bounce. This combination of high performance components helps the F5 achieve its benchmark combination of speed and accuracy.

AF Modes and Options: Dynamic or Single Area AF, Plus Single-Servo and Continuous Servo AF

The Nikon F5's AF systems are unmatched in versatility; photographers can choose among a number of options, and even customize these options to match the subject and shooting conditions.

Dynamic AF mode allows the photographer to designate one of the five AF sensors as the primary sensor. Once chosen, the primary sensor is used as the sensor for the first detection of the subject. If the subject distance changes, the sensor will detect the change and AF operation will begin. If the subject moves out of the area of the primary sensor, then the Nikon F5 will detect this movement and automatically scan and change the sensor so that the subject's movement can be followed and sharp focus can be maintained. Through Nikon's powerful software for Focus Tracking with Lock-on, even the brief moments that a subject may be between sensors do not disrupt focus. This system is ideal for sports, action and nature photography, effectively eliminating the "bulls-eye" centered shots. Dynamic AF can handle quick action, changing speeds and changing angles of motion.

Single Area AF mode offers the photographer creative control by presenting a choice of five precisely positioned AF spot sensors. The photographer selects which sensor to use by pressing the keypad on the back of the camera. Subjects detected by the chosen sensor area will be in sharp focus, virtually instantaneously. This is perfect for off-center subjects and eliminates the need to lock focus and recompose. It encourages visual exploration because it eliminates any extra steps to attain sharp focus.

There are two AF Release modes: Single Servo AF and Continuous Servo AF. The former is focus priority; the shutter will not release until focus has been confirmed. The latter is release priority; the shutter will be released when the photographer presses the shutter button. Custom settings allow the photographer to interchange focus and release priority in each mode. In manual focus, or when AF is activated separately from the shutter release button, the Nikon F5's two secondary AF Start buttons -- one for horizontal and one for vertical shooting -- come in handy.

Focus Tracking with Lock-On

When subjects go into motion, photographers need an AF system that will keep pace. That's the idea behind Nikon's Focus Tracking. When the subject begins to move, Focus Tracking is automatically activated, regardless of the AF mode or AF area mode selected. With the five area Wide-Cross Array AF sensor module, this computer-assisted system analyzes the speed of the subject as it drives the autofocus lens in anticipation of subject movement. This makes focus detection possible regardless of the direction of motion, even at the rapid 8 fps.

Aiding this amazingly fast response is the continuous overlap servo method of processing AF data. Some AF systems collect focusing data and process it in "blocks," then focus the lens in a stepped or intermittent method. The F5 lens continues focusing even during data processing, which results in more consistently sharp focus. Performance tests demonstrate that the Nikon F5's AF system can Focus Track on subjects moving faster than other systems. With a 300mm AF-S Nikkor lens, Focus Tracking can handle a subject, such as a race car, moving at a rate of 200 mph at a distance as close as 66 ft.

Lock-On is an exclusive Nikon AF feature that overcomes momentary interruptions in focus caused by an obstruction in front of the lens (such as a swaying tree branch in the woods) or a secondary subject that may briefly interrupt the point of view (such as a defensive end dashing across the field). This also applies if the photographer accidentally moves the AF sensor area off the main subject for a moment. Lock-On is key to maintaining focus during fast action shooting. With other systems, the autofocus detector will either "snag" on the obstruction, or will cause the lens to rack forward, thus losing the prime target.

Focus Tracking in the Nikon F5 can be used in any AF mode, AF area mode or film advance mode. Other systems require the camera to be set to continuous servo mode for Focus Tracking to be activated. Focus Tracking with Lock-On is also available in the Nikon N90s.

Wide EV Range: AF even in Dim Lighting

The F5's Multi-CAM 1300 operates in the widest EV range available -- EV minus 1 to EV 19. EV-1 equals an exposure of f/2 at eight seconds with ISO 100, a lighting condition so dark that even the human eye may have trouble focusing. When necessary, using a Nikon AF Speedlight (SB-26, -27 or -23) allows for autofocus even in total darkness via an LED light pattern that is emitted onto the subject. Setting the camera's AF mode to single servo and selecting the center focus area will activate the AF illuminator. Secondary AF Start Buttons

As mentioned, photographers have a number of options in AF modes and AF Release modes -- they can choose focus or release priority in both single- and continuous- servo modes. In many cases, joining the shutter release and focusing operations is desirable. However, there are conditions when separating the two functions comes in handy; photographers can concentrate on shutter release timing. This is invaluable for peak sports action and wildlife photography when capturing the decisive moment requires the keen concentration and instincts of the photographer.

There are two secondary AF start buttons -- for horizontal and vertical shooting. AF activation can be transferred to the Secondary AF Start buttons by using Custom Setting #4. This also allows for a quick changeover between autofocus and manual focus operation.

Freeze Focus

Available with the optional MF-28 Multi-Control Back, Freeze Focus automatically fires the shutter when a subject enters a pre-selected plane of focus. This ensures tack-sharp images for wildlife photography, macro-photography and remote photography. When used with manual focus mode, photographers can capture images of animals as they move down a track. Photographers can also use freeze focus for sports, fashion, stock or botanical shots in the field. Freeze focus operates with either AF or manual focus.

Electronic Rangefinder

Offering more versatility than optical rangefinders, the Nikon F5's Electronic Rangefinder is a manual focusing aid that also indicates the direction of lens rotation to lead to sharpness and confirms focus. This feature can be used with AF Nikkor or other manual focus AI-type Nikkor lenses with a maximum aperture of f/5.6 or faster. AF Nikkor Lens System

Nikon offers an extensive selection of AF Nikkor optics, including AF Nikkor, AF-I Nikkor and AF-S Nikkor. All lenses work with the Nikon F5's F Lens Mount, and interface with the extensive communication of the mount.

AF Nikkor lenses are focus-driven by the F5's built-in AF high-torque coreless motor. Connecting to each lens via a drive control, AF operation is fast and accurate. The F5's motor responds instantly to the commands of the AF computer. Every AF Nikkor lens will operate with the F5's system faster than ever -- because the Nikon F5 has a more powerful AF drive system. The investment in AF Nikkor lenses is a good one for professionals and amateurs alike.

AF-I Nikkor lenses feature a built-in AF drive motor. They autofocus with near silent operation, and are fast and accurate. The newest Nikkor lenses with built-in AF drive system include the AF-S Nikkor lenses. With their Silent Wave Motors, they are the fastest and most accurate performers in photography. They focus faster and closer, and together with the Nikon F5, they provide performance that's unequaled.

Current lenses in the AF-S category include 300 f/2.8, 500 f/4 and 600 f/4.

June 20, 1996

Nikon F5 professional 35mm SLR camera

Nikon F5 professional 35mm SLR camera

Nikon is changing the way professional photographers approach their craft with the introduction of the new Nikon F5 professional 35mm SLR camera. The camera offers many technological advances and breakthroughs in every major 35mm SLR feature-category, making it the most advanced 35mm SLR camera available.

The Nikon F5 takes photos at an unprecedented 8 frames per second (fps) with focus tracking, which is 60% faster than any current 35mm camera. This allows photographers, even those in the most fast-paced situations, to capture the images they desire.

The new camera also features the world's most advanced metering system. The 3D Color Matrix Meter is a 1,005-pixel RGB (red green blue) exposure sensor that evaluates scene brightness, contrast, and now even adds color evaluation to its exposure calculations. Exclusive Nikon technology allows the new metering system to incorporate distance and, for the first time, color into the exposure equation.

The Nikon F5 stores exposure information from more than 30,000 actual photographic scenes in its memory. When a photo is taken, the camera's on-board computer compares the new scene to those in its memory. When the computer finds a match, it incorporates optimal exposure information from the scene in memory in calculating the suggested aperture and shutter speed. Photographers thus achieve the best exposure for each individual image.

"The F5 was designed with the professional photographer in mind, and will become an essential tool for sports, news, nature and location photographers, said Richard LoPinto, vice president of Nikon's Photo Marketing Group. "While pros will immediately understand and embrace all that the F5 has to offer, the avid advanced photographer and anyone who seeks top-of-the-line technology will also recognize the F5 as a "must have" camera."

The new camera also offers photographers the choice of two additional meters, including the world's first flexible center-weighted meter. The flexible center-weighted meter allows photographers to concentrate 75 percent of the metering on a center 12mm circle. Thanks to Nikon's exclusive technology, photographers can customize the size of this center circle, with a choice of 8mm, 12mm, 15mm, 20mm, or a simple averaging meter. The spot meter, when used in single servo AF mode, provides a choice of five, 4mm diameter sensors for very specific metering situations.

Another exclusive F5 advantage is the exclusive Multi-Cam 1300 Autofocus (AF) Sensor with the world's first Wide-Area Cross-Type Array. The Nikon F5's autofocusing system covers more area, giving more focusing coverage than any other camera. With the exclusive Wide-Area Cross-type Array of CCDs, photographers can track subjects as they move in both vertical and horizontal compositions. Subjects that might elude other autofocusing systems produce sharp images when photographed with the F5.

The AF system includes five focus area sensors, three of which are full-time cross-type sensors. The five sensors operate in two AF modes -- Dynamic Mode and Single Area Mode. With Single Area Mode, you choose the sensor to operate as a spot autofocus sensor. Your selection corresponds to the composition of the scene. When shooting action, you can choose Dynamic Mode. After you designate a primary sensor, if the subject moves, Dynamic Mode will lock-on it and track it as it moves among the sensors. This ensures fast and reliable autofocus operation. Even when view of the subject is momentarily interrupted, the F5's Lock-on feature will keep sharp focus on the moving subject.

The Nikon F5 has up to 24 custom settings, many with multiple options, built in. The optional MF-28 Multi-Control Back can be used to take interval exposures (for the opening of a flower or the building progress of a backyard deck). The multi-control back can also imprint time and date, and can even individually label a film between frames with a copyright notice, to help secure the photographer's picture rights. Photographers can also use the optional back to freeze focus, which fires the camera when a subject enters a pre-set plane of focus.

There is also custom software, called Photo Manager, that enables the Nikon F5 to be controlled by a personal computer -- either a Mac or a PC -- to store shooting data and add 17 additional Custom Settings.

"The F5 is designed to bring photographers, both experienced and emerging professionals, into the future of photography and their profession," said LoPinto. "That's why it will also appeal to anyone who wants to work with the best tool available; Nikon's reputation of defying obsolescence is further defined by the performance and compatibility of the F5."

The Nikon F5 is built with Nikon precision and integrity; it has the traditional Nikon F-type lens mount, and is compatible with virtually every Nikkor lens and a large assortment of Nikon accessories. Extensive compatibility is an integral part of Nikon's plans for now and into the future.

The Nikon F5 is scheduled for delivery in Fall 1996. Price will be announced at time of delivery.

May 25, 1996

Donald Judd, Susan Inglett Gallery, NYC

Donald Judd: Drawings
Susan Inglett Gallery, New York
23 May - 29 June 1996

Susan Inglett presents an exhibition of drawings by DONALD JUDD curated by David Platzker.

While Donald Judd was best known for his sculptures, or "specific-objects", his drawings present the best rare evidence of the artist's own hand.

For the Minimalists, absence of hand was as much an artistic gesture as a political one. In their efforts to redefine and perfect the art object, Donald Judd and contemporaries including Dan Flavin, Carl Andre, and Robert Morris, regularly engaged professional fabricators. By doing so drawing became a necessary tool to communicate the particulars of the work to be executed.

Additionally, Donald Judd made drawings in order to document sculpture produced or as project proposals. The drawings presented in this exhibition dated 1964 to 1984 describe proposals for a selection of metal and concrete sculptures.

They are, in essence, the raw material from which Donald Judd would hone, refine, perfect his consummate "specific-object".

SUSAN INGLETT GALLERY
100 Wooster Street, New York
www.inglettgallery.com

May 12, 1996

Jose Bedia - George Adams Gallery, New York

Jose Bedia: Mi Essencialismo / My Essentialism
George Adams Gallery, New York
May 10 – June 7, 1996

George Adams Gallery presents Mi Esencialismo - My Essentialism, a new series of paintings and drawings by Jose Bedia. The exhibition was jointly organized by the George Adams Gallery, New York, the Hyde Gallery, Trinity College, Dublin, and the Pori Art Museum, Pori, Finland. Mi Esencialismo is accompanied by an illustrated catalogue with essays by Judith Bettelheim, Professor of Art at San Francisco State University, and Melissa Feldman, curator of the 1994 Bedia survey exhibition organized by the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia. Ten drawings and eight paintings from the series, as well as an installation created for the New York venue, are on view.

"Essentialism," writes Judith Bettelheim, "is most broadly understood as referring to a fixed aspect of a given entity." Which in ethnology translates as an immutable cultural characteristic. The anti-essentialist view, which Bedia shares, holds that a culture is never pure, but is constantly altered through contact with other cultures. As Ms. Feldman points out, "through his knowledge of ethnology and extensive travel, Bedia has adopted a pancultural point of view which acknowledges a fundamental commonality among different belief systems." Bedia, who is of mixed - Spanish and African - descent, was born in Cuba in 1960. At the core of his art is the language, imagery and beliefs of Santeria and Palo Monte, Afro-Cuban religions brought to Cuba during the 19th Century by slaves (the Kongo and the Yoruba of what is now Angola). Other significant influences are the Indians and the pre-Columbian civilizations of the Americas, as well as artists as diverse as Joseph Beuys, Robert Rauschenberg and H.C. Westermann.

In this exhibition Jose Bedia presents two series of paintings and drawings that combine 19th Century photographs of the Kongo and of North American Indians with his own hand-rendered versions of the same image. Bedia's re-rendered images are intended to present a non-Western viewpoint, supplying critical information that, as Melissa Feldman writes, "fills out the image to its full iconic potency." Bedia's aim is not to deny the accuracy of the photograph, but to elucidate the additional layers of meaning in order to allow for a more sophisticated reading of the image or event depicted in the photograph.

GEORGE ADAMS GALLERY
www.georgeadamsgallery.com

March 27, 1996

Hanne Darboven at Dia Center for the Arts, New York

Hanne Darboven: Kulturgeschichte 1880-1983
Dia Center for the Arts, New York

Hanne Darboven's monumental work entitled Kulturgeschichte 1880-1983 (Cultural History 1880-1983), 1980-1983, will open to the public at Dia Center for the Arts, 548 West 22nd Street, New York, on March 28, 1996.

Kulturgeschichte 1880-1983 consists of 1,590 wall-mounted panels of uniform size and format and nineteen objects. It traces one hundred years of history via a miscellany of images and texts that range from postcards to art reproductions, portraits of film stars, and the covers of weekly magazines. Many bear handwritten notes and quotations.

Over the past thirty years, this German artist has created a vast body of work based on time as registered by history and by memory alike. Beginning with the date, whose numbers she manipulates into a temporal and chronological system, Darboven has in Kulturgeschichte 1880-1983 constructed an encompassing, encyclopedic archive that fuses public history and collective memory with personal experience.

Hanne Darboven was born in 1941 in Munich, Germany. In 1965 she graduated from the Hochschule für Bildende Kunst in Hamburg, where she had studied painting. Between 1966 and 1968, Darboven lived in New York City where she created her first mature works, which placed her at the center of Conceptual art practice. Since 1967 she has participated in numerous national and international exhibitions, including Reconsidering the Object of Art: 1965-1975, Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, 1995-96. In New York City she has shown with Leo Castelli Gallery since 1973. She lives and works in Hamburg, Germany.

Dia Center for the Arts
www.diacenter.org

March 13, 1996

Pentax ZX-5 35mm SLR Camera

Pentax ZX-5 SLR Camera

Designed for ease-of-use, the Pentax ZX-5 SLR camera's simplified features let photographers concentrate on getting great pictures the first time they pick up the camera. Yet it has everything beginning and advanced photographers desire: multi-mode exposure, fast accurate autofocus, a built-in auto flash and a wide range of lenses and accessories. All beautifully packaged in a light-weight compact silver and black body reminiscent of those classic cameras of years gone by. So if you want a new breed of SLR camera, one that's picture perfect inside and out, there's only one choice--the ZX-5 from Pentax.

Research shows that millions of Pentax customers still own and use the sturdy and classic SLR cameras that enjoyed great popularity in the '50s and '60s. The new ZX-5 incorporates those most useful features and simple design in a handsome compact body. Like the famous cameras of years ago, the Pentax ZX-5 is designed with the most essential features. Therefore, mechanical SLR lovers as well as people new to photography can pick up the ZX-5 and begin to shoot with it immediately. Yet it eclipses those cameras with its advanced metering and autofocus systems.

The metering system of the ZX-5 features Pentax's well known six segment multi-pattern metering. This assures optimal results even under difficult lighting conditions. The spot metering allows the photographer to pin-point the metering at a single small area of the frame. Center-weighted metering is also provided for those photographers who prefer conventional metering systems.

It's easy to capture perfectly exposed photographs while shooting with the Pentax ZX-5. This is due to the fact that four exposure modes are available; programmed AE, aperture priority AE, shutter priority AE, and metered manual. The three auto-exposure modes are designed to simplify operation while the metered manual mode lets the shooter make all the choices to create the shot he is seeking. Together these choices provide the photographer with the opportunity to create a variety of visual effects.

The two control dials on the camera's top silver panel enable speedy and accurate setting of the metering mode and shutter speed. The obvious advantage of this design is the easy access it provides at the turn of a dial. To complement the dial control system, the Pentax ZX-5 is equipped with a multi-data viewfinder display and an easy to read LCD panel. The viewfinder display even comes with an illuminator whose illumination level is automatically adjusted according to the brightness of the subject.

The Pentax ZX-5 incorporates a high precision, high speed phase matching autofocus system which is extremely reliable even under poor lighting conditions. The predictive autofocus function, found in Pentax's professional SLRs, automatically activates when the camera detects the subject's motion. Then it is able to "predict" the subject's position at the exact moment of the shutter release and adjust the focus accordingly. It is even possible to take a few more pictures after the subject moves out of the autofocus frame. The ZX-5's autofocus system is enhanced by

SAFOX IV (Sensor Ability Fortifying Optical Compensation System). The system is new to the PENTAX SLR line and has a three-point autofocus module with wide-focus capability. This is due to a H-shaped layout of the three AF sensors that delivers pin-point focusing on a greater variety of subjects. The sensors are also sensitive to subjects with vertical or horizontal lines.

The Pentax ZX-5 incorporates a built-in "smart flash" which covers up to a 28mm angle of view. It also gives a warning when the camera detects low light and backlit situations. When the camera is set in programmed AE mode and the flash is in the pop-up position, the smart flash automatically provides supplementary illumination to the subject for perfect exposure.

The advanced TTL flash control system makes previously complicated flash techniques such as daylight sync and slow shutter sync simple and effortless. It is also equipped with a pre-flash function to reduce the "red-eye" effect in subjects eyes.

Many cameras today are responding to photographers' increasing interest in using a panorama mode. The Pentax ZX-5 offers this mode which is available at a simple twist of a lever. The viewfinder also has a long comfortable eye-point and diopter adjustment.

Pentax offers a full range of interchangeable lenses to satisfy very diverse needs--ranging from ultra-wide angle to super telephoto and even special effects such as fisheye, macro and soft focus. All lenses are treated with the acclaimed super multi-coating (SMC) for sharp, high contrast images with minimal aberrations. Many existing Pentax accessories can be used with a Pentax ZX-5 including the AF-500 FTZ and AF-330 FTZ dedicated flash units. The line-up is further expanded with the addition of new accessories which are exclusively designed for the ZX-5 including a AA battery pack for extended shooting sessions, a data back and extension cord hot-shoe adapter and off-camera adapter. 

Update: August 1996 - EISA Award

The Pentax ZX-5 has been selected as the "European Camera of the Year 1996-1997" by the European Imaging and Sound Association (EISA). The official presentation of the award will be held on September 18 at Photokina in Cologne, Germany. Having already won TIPA's "The Best SLR camera of the Year '96-'97," earlier in the year, the ZX-5 has won the two most prestigious awards presented to SLR cameras in Europe. 

In selecting the ZX-5, the jury commented that, "With the ZX-5, PENTAX has developed a new breed of autofocus SLR. Its inspired design utilizes the best details of a compact camera within an ultra-light body. The camera's logical and traditional control layout makes it a joy to use; its overall performance exceeds the needs of most photo hobbyists at a very reasonable price."

Pentax (US) / Asahi Optical Company, Ltd., Japan