The Meaning of Photography

Saturday, November 19, 2005
9:00 am

How can we write the histories of photography? How should art history and visual studies integrate the special technical and aesthetic challenges posed by the medium and respond to the intense interest it has provoked in the museum and the academy in recent years? This public symposium, convened by Robin Kelsey and Blake Stimson, brought together some of the most distinguished historians and critics of photography to tackle these questions and discuss the current state of the history and theory of photography.

Participants included: Geoffrey Batchen, The City University of New York; Benjamin Buchloh, Harvard University; Jonathan Crary, Columbia University; Mary Ann Doane, Brown University; Robin Kelsey, Harvard University; Doug Nickel, University of Arizona; Sally Stein, University of California at Irvine; Blake Stimson, University of California at Davis

PROGRAM in order of discussion:

Spectral Surfaces/Luminous Practices
Jonathan Crary

Peter Henry Emerson: The Mechanics of Seeing
Doug Nickel

The Problem of Luck
Robin Kelsey

Sizing Up Photography
Sally Stein

Dreams of Ordinary Life: Photography, History, Memory
Geoffrey Batchen

A Photograph Is Never Alone
Blake Stimson

Indexicality and the Concept of Medium Specificity
Mary Ann Doane

Photography and Conceptual Art
Benjamin Buchloh