Homework #10 (last one!): What do Rock Stars eat behind stage?

Henry Hargreaves, Rihanna’s backstage request for “hard-boiled eggs, turkey bacon, turkey sausage, at any time through out the day” from petapixel.com

Henry Hargreaves, Rihanna’s backstage request for “hard-boiled eggs, turkey bacon, turkey sausage, at any time through out the day” from petapixel.com

After last month’s “egg photos” for your  presentations, I thought you would like to share your thoughts on these still life photographs of unusual requests made by musicians when they go on tour. When musicians perform at major concerts, their contracts include riders that outline what they need to have backstage. These riders often feature requests for food such as Lady Gaga’s request for a “small plate of cheese (nonsmelly, nonsweaty), on ice.” The photographer Henry Hargreaves with the help of a stylist produced photographs in the style of Flemish still life painting, a genre that emerged in seventeenth-century Netherlands. The photographs are stylish and give viewers a peek into the personalities (and quirks!) of different musicians. Read the article on Hargreaves’ Band Riders photo series and share what you think of his pictures.

Read about Henry Hargreaves “Band Riders” photo series here.

You can see the entire “Band Riders” series on the photographer’s website (he has also photographed ‘deep-fried’ gadgets like iPads).

Please submit your posts by Monday, December 21st (Day of the Final Exam!). 

Homework #9: Robert Frank’s America

Robert Frank, Drugstore, Detroit, 1955-56

Robert Frank, Drugstore, Detroit, 1955-56

For this homework assignment, please watch a short video on last year’s exhibition at Stanford University’s Cantor Center for Visual Arts. The exhibition highlighted Robert Frank’s seminal photography book The Americans (1958) and the photographs that didn’t make it into the book. The book contains only 83 photos but Robert Frank took many more. The video gives you a tour of the exhibition with the curator Peter Galassi, formerly of MoMA. What do you think of the themes addressed in Frank’s photographs, do you find them artistic? bleak? or political?

Take a short tour of the Cantor exhibition on Robert Frank here. 

Please submit your posts by Monday December 14th!.

Reminder: HW #8 is due Monday 12/7 and short list for Final

pen-nibPlease remember to submit your posts to the latest homework on Robert Capa’s infamous photo “Death of a Loyalist Soldier” 1936. Also look under the slide lists section (under the ARTH Class Files tab above) for the short list to the final exam. The exam format is the same as the midterm. To refresh your memory, you can look at the format under ARTH Class Files too.

Homework #8 is due by Monday December 7th.

The final exam is on Monday December 21st at 11:30 am.

Homework #8: Robert Capa’s Death of a Loyalist Soldier

Falling Soldier

Robert Capa, “Death of a Loyalist Soldier” 1936

At the age of 23, Robert Capa took a photograph that many have labeled the greatest war photograph of all time. Taken during the Spanish Civil War, the renown of Capa’s photograph, Falling Soldier or Death of a Loyalist Soldier, reverberated around the world as it was published and republished in contemporary news magazines. However, Capa’s photo has been shadowed by controversy, including accusations of fakery. Read an analysis on the image by Capa’s biographer, Robert Whelan, on the authenticity of the photograph. Do you find his arguments convincing? Do you think Capa’s photograph is staged or not? And do you think its authenticity matters?

Richard Whelan’s discussion of Capa’s photograph

Please post your responses by Monday, December 7th.


Homework #7: Instagram and the Art of Food Photography

Martin Parr, Untitled (Turkey and Lamp), 1994, from the British Food series

Martin Parr, Untitled (Turkey and Lamp), 1994, from the British Food series

Happy Thanksgiving! In our homework, we have considered how photographing food can be an art form. A recent article “Food instagrammers turn their accounts in professions” in the Wall Street Journal highlights how some people have turned their obsession with photographing food into real-world perks, like free meals or cash! Using social media outlets, like Instagram, these foodie entrepreneurs have turned their love of eating out into a viable marketing tool for the hospitality industry. Read the Wall Street Journal article and compare these amateur photos to food photographs by an art photographer like Martin Parr, who is a member of the esteemed photography cooperative Magnum Photos. Parr created a series dedicated “British Foods,” which includes the photograph of the turkey shown here. What do you think are some of the differences between food photography for marketing and food photography for art? Do you prefer one over the other?

Read the Wall Street Journal article here.

Look at Martin Parr’s series here.

PLEASE SUBMIT YOUR POSTS BY MONDAY NOVEMBER 30, 2015. Same day Writing Assignment #2 is DUE (please make sure you choose one exhibition on the list, do not try to review the entire museum, rather pick one of the exhibitions to review)

Homework #6: Picturing Breakfast Around the World

Everyday the Dutch eat at least 750,000 slices of bread topped with butter and the chocolate sprinkles called hagelslag

Everyday the Dutch eat at least 750,000 slices of bread topped with butter and the chocolate sprinkles called hagelslag

The New York Times Magazine published a slideshow about what children eat for breakfast around the world. Read the article and share with your classmates your thoughts on breakfast as a meal. Do you think its essential? Are American breakfasts too sugary? In addition, please post a picture of something you think is essential for breakfast.

Read the NYTimes article “What kids around the world eat for breakfast.”

Please post your responses by Monday, November 23rd.

Reminder: Luncheon and Presentations on Monday Nov 16th!

Andre Kertesz, The Way a Poem of Endre Ady's Began on a Cafe Table in Paris, 1928

Andre Kertesz, The Way a Poem of Endre Ady’s Began on a Cafe Table in Paris, 1928

This is a reminder that we meet at 11:30 am in A631 on Monday November 16th to load your presentations before heading downstairs to the Janet Lefler Dining Room. I will lock up our classroom during lunch but you are welcome to lock things in your own lockers by the dining room. Please bring a thumbdrive with your groups’ Powerpoint or download your presentation from Google Drive/iCloud/etc. We will make our way down to the dining room at 11:45 am for our luncheon! After lunch, we will return to our classroom for your presentations. Be sure to submit one copy of the Powerpoint presentation for each group and your individual reflections on the project directly to me.

Please remember that the Dining Room has a business casual dress code. Therefore, remember no sneakers, no jeans, etc.

I look forward to seeing you tomorrow for a unique class meeting filled your photography, food, and maybe even a little poetry…

Homework #5: Walker Evans’ Subway Portraits

Walker Evans’ photographed people on the New York City subways between 1938-1941. He only published these photographs 25 years later in his book, Many Are Called, which was re-issued in 2004. Read a review about the new edition in the New York Times or listen to a radio interview of the book’s re-release and a related exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Then look at some of Evans photographs on the Getty website. What do you think of Evans’ clandestine approach to photography? Do you see similarities between the riders’ expressions during the Depression Era to today’s riders?

Walker Evans, Subway Couple

Walker Evans, Subway Couple

New York Times Book review

NPR interview with Met curator Jeff Rosenheim (audio)

Getty Collection of Walker Evans Subway Portraits

Please post your responses by Monday, November 16th.

Reminder: Midterm on Monday Oct 26, 2015 at 11:30 am

"Better three hours too soon, than one minute too late." — William Shakespeare

“Better three hours too soon, than one minute too late.” — William Shakespeare

This is a reminder that the midterm is on Monday October 26th at 11:30 am in class. Please be on time. The midterm is keyed to images, once the exam begins, please do not expect the class to re-start the exam if you walk in very late.

Because there were numerous absences last Monday for an important class on Alfred Stieglitz and his organization the Photo-Secession and Pictorialism to Straight Photography, I recommend that you watch 35 min of The Eloquent Eye, a documentary on Stieglitz. If you missed the last class, you should get notes from classmates that cover the review too.

Come early! Don’t forget to review the images from the midterm short list (download from this page), as well as the vocabulary words and terms from earlier slide lists. The exam format and image files are also uploaded under ARTH Class Files on the class website. If you need a reminder of the exam format, please look at it here. There are 4 parts and as noted, part IV — terminology is on processes. You should know basic definitions of the early photographic processes from the early photogenic drawing to gum bichromate process, and be able to discuss basic characteristics (i.e., know that a daguerreotype is a photograph on a metal plate) and their advantages and disadvantages (i.e., i.e., a daguerreotype offers sharp details but is a unique image). To accompany each of your definitions, you must also cite an example of that process.

Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have questions. Most importantly, ARRIVE ON TIME Monday!

PS Don’t forget Homework #4 (due midnight 10/26)

Homework #4: Food and Status in History

Bill Brandt, Parlourmaid and Under-Parlourmaid Ready to Serve Dinner, c. 1934, from metmuseum.org

Bill Brandt, Parlourmaid and Under-Parlourmaid Ready to Serve Dinner, c. 1934, from metmuseum.org

The twentieth-century photographer Bill Brandt (1904-1983) took photographs of the servants working in wealthy households and coal miners in modest dwellings. His photographs often juxtaposed the working class and those with privilege. The images show the abundance of the upper classes, including the banker whose servants are pictured here about to serve dinner at a country home. Historically, the number of servants has long been equated to the status of the household, more help reflects greater importance. One of the most extravagant displays of status through food was the royal court of the French King Louis XIV at Versailles outside Paris. Watch an excerpt from a film by Roberto Rossellini, La Prise du Pouvoir par Louis XIV aka The Rise of Louis XIV (1966) that recreates the dinner service of Louis XIV. The excerpt is in French with English subtitles. Note how many cooks and servants are required to serve one man. In our own times, have you noticed how food can communicate status? at parties? weddings? or even picnics?  Post an example of how food can be make a social statement.

Watch the excerpt from Rossellini’s film here.