Description: An exhibition in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the University of Louisville Photographic Archives. Since 1962 the University of Louisville Photographic Archives has grown to over two million images by hundreds of internationally known and emerging photographers, along with major collections such as the Roy Stryker Papers, Standard Oil (New Jersey) Photo Documentary Project, Caufield and Shook, and Fine Print collections. For the 50th anniversary we have organized an exhibition featuring the work of contemporary photographers alongside photographs that they have chosen from the archives. We have invited esteemed local photographers and friends of the Photographic Archives to submit work that reflects or is inspired by works in our collections. This pairing of contemporary and archival photography is meant to illustrate the significance of the Photographic Archives as a consummate resource that remains open to all artists, students, researchers and casual browsers alike.
Description: "2012 U.S. Cities Contemporary Art Rankings: A New Hierarchical Approach" was
first performed in 2011 with a crowd of thirty-five artists and creative workers in a
Minneapolis gallery. Creating a second edition – this time, in a university setting,
with a different group (many of whom have had careers elsewhere following their
graduations from UofL), in an entirely different geographic and cultural part of the
country – would yield an entirely different set of results.
Many of the questions are the same, regardless of setting: is New York really
America’s only truly world-class art center, or has L.A. become its peer? Does the
influence of Harrell Fletcher in Portland and current widespread interest in social
practice make that city a bona fide contemporary art capital? Is the relative lack of a
traditional arts infrastructure in a city like Detroit offset by the influx of young artists
that have moved there in the past ten years? Is Miami national grade all year-round,
or just when Art Basel is going on? Using faux-sociological language, the project aims to crudely (and humorously) replicate the sort of Richard Florida-styled list-crafting that dominates much national discussion of contemporary art and placemaking. Located in that gray area between satire and earnest inquiry, the project draws on its audience's collective knowledge and investment in their own individual regional identities, as well as demonstrating the inherent limitations in reducing complex cultural and sociological factors into easily digestible charts, maps, and lists.