The University of California Institute for Research in the Arts supports embedded arts research through critical exchange

November 4: Photographing the Future: Utopian Vision and Ansel Adams’s Fiat Lux

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Friday, November 4, 4-6 p.m.
Geballe Room, Townsend Center for Humanities Stephens Hall, UC Berkeley

In 1963 Ansel Adams was commissioned by then UC president Clark Kerr to create a photographic book for the upcoming centennial celebration of the University of California in 1968. Adams was asked to “…emphasize the prospective view for the university and [to] project in images, as far as possible, “the next hundred years.” Between 1963 and 1967, Adams shot 6,000 images of the campuses and outposts of the university – producing a book, Fiat Lux, and an archive that has rarely been seen or explored, though it represents the single largest commission ever undertaken by this iconic American photographer. Paglen and Bryan-Wilson will discuss the ethical, aesthetic, and prophetic dimensions of this hubristic but revealing archive.

Trevor Paglen is a visual artist and geographer. Paglen’s visual work has been exhibited at Tate Modern, London; The Walker Arts Center, Minneapolis; The Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh; Institute for Contemporary Art, Philadelphia; The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art, North Adams; the 2008 Taipei Biennial; the Istanbul Biennial 2009, and numerous other solo and group exhibitions. Julia Bryan-Wilson is an art historian focusing on modern and contemporary art, in particular post-war American, Latin American and European art, feminism, queer theory, performance, craft histories, video, art in the nuclear age, and collaborative practices. Her book “Art Workers: Radical Practice in the Vietnam War Era” was published in 2009 and was named a “best book of the year” by Artforum magazine.

STILL PICTURES events are funded by the The Project on Disciplinary Innovation at the Townsend Center for the Humanities, UC Berkeley.

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