Williscover

RPS Awardees in conversation... Deborah Willis HonFRPS

Event info

In this on-going series of 'in conversations' hear from leading individuals talk about how they use photography as artists, scientists, educators, publishers and curators. All our speakers are recent RPS Award recipients who have been recognised for their contribution to the medium. They are discussing their work with those who know them and their work.

All talks and links to recordings (where available) in the series can be seen here: https://rps.org/awardstalks

Deborah Willis HonFRPS in conversation with Cheryl Finley

Deborah Willis, PhD HonFRPS is University Professor and Chair of the Department of Photography & Imaging at the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University. She is an exhibiting artist, the recipient of the MacArthur Fellowship and a Guggenheim Fellowship. She has received numerous awards notably from the Royal Photographic Society, the NAACP Image Award and the ICP Infinity Award in Writing in Photography, among others.  She is the author of the recently published, The Black Civil War Soldier: A Visual History of Conflict and Citizenship and Posing Beauty: African American Images from the 1890s to the Present, among others. Professor Willis’s curated exhibitions include: "Let Your Motto Be Resistance: African American Portraits” at the International Center of Photography; Out of Fashion Photography: Framing Beauty at the Henry Art Gallery and "Reframing Beauty: Intimate Moments" at Indiana University. Since 2006 she has co-organized thematic conferences exploring imaging the black body in the West such as the conference titled Black Portraiture[s] which was held in Johannesburg in 2016. She has appeared and consulted on media projects including documentary films such as Through A Lens Darkly and Question Bridge: Black Males, a transmedia project, which received the ICP Infinity Award 2015, and American Photography, PBS Documentary.  

Deborah Willis was given the Royal Photographic Society’s Award for Outstanding Service to Photography in 2020. 

Dr Cheryl Finley is director of the Atlanta University Center Art History + Curatorial Studies Collective and Distinguished Visiting Professor of Art History at Spelman College. A visionary leader committed to engaging strategic partners to transform the art and culture industry, she leads an innovative undergraduate program at the world’s largest historically Black college and university (HBCUs) consortium in preparing the next generation of African American museum and visual arts professionals. She is a curator, contemporary art critic, and award-winning author noted for Committed to Memory: The Art of the Slave Ship Icon (2018), the first in-depth study of the most famous image associated with the memory of slavery—a schematic engraving of a packed slave ship hold—and the art, architecture, poetry, and film it has inspired since its creation in Britain in 1788. Another of Dr. Finley’s recent publications is My Soul Has Grown Deep: Black Art from the American South (Yale University Press, 2018), which accompanied the exhibition History Refused to Die: Highlights from the Souls Grown Deep Foundation at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

Dr. Finley has contributed essays and reviews to Aperture, Burlington Review, Nka: Journal of Contemporary African Art, American Quarterly and Art Forum. Her prolific critical attention to photography has produced the coauthored publications Teenie Harris, Photographer: An American Story (Carnegie Museum of Art, 2011), Harlem: A Century in Images (Skira Rizzoli, 2010), Diaspora, Memory, Place: David Hammons, Maria Magdalena Campos- Pons, Pamela Z (Prestel, 2008), and numerous catalog essays and journal articles on artists such as Lorna Simpson, Hank Willis Thomas, Walker Evans, Joy Gregory HonFRPS, Carrie Mae Weems HonFRPS, Roshini Kempadoo, Deborah Willis HonFRPS and Berenice Abbott.

The 'in conversation' will be followed by a public Q+A. Questions will be taken by Zoom chat or can be emailed in advance. Your Zoom link will be sent in PDF with your booking confirmation. 

All talks and links to recordings (where available) in the series can be seen here: https://rps.org/awardstalks

Event Organiser

Name
Jo Macdonald
Email
Jo@rps.org

Location

Cancellation policy

This is an online event. The RPS will do its best to ensure that it keeps to the published timings and runs as planned. In the unlikely event that the event has to be cancelled all participants will be advised by email at the earliest opportunity.  No responsibility will be accepted for any consequential losses.

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