notes from the field: an SPE overview

Jenn and I out taking a stroll on market St.

Back from a great national conference. Still processing all the information. Spoke on a panel about Language, Diversity and Community. Heard speakers including Kip Fulbeck, Hank Willis-Thomas, Dawoud Bey and so many more. Deb Willis was the honored educator and I was so looking forward to hearing her lecture---but instead a number of people who have been close to her throughout the years paid tribute to her exellence. which honestly, made me want to hear her even more- their words were incredibly moving.

Bought a few books at aperture, talked to many interesting artists and students, looked at art and played a little too...capped each night with a martini (or two...or three)

My only comment about the event is that for a topic as big as diversity I felt that there was not enough discussion time after each panel/lecture. To really dig in and get our hands dirty I believe that a public conversation is necessary. Even despite this, I think some important points and histories were discussed.

Dawoud Bey just posted his thoughts on the conference and a transcript of his lecture as one of the conference's keynote speaker's on his blog What's Going On.

Philadelphia was a great city for the conference. It was energetic and creative.
The bus that SPE organized for a gallery tour took us to the new yet wonderful Philadelphia Photographic Arts Center, and to Gallery 339 where I saw the exhibition Show by Henry Horenstein(who wil be teaching at CPW this summer).

Jenn and I got to walk around a bit and snap a few shots and visit the oh so wonderful Mutter Museum. Aside from the medical specimens that were intriguing beyond belief (I stared at deformed fetuses and objects that were lodged in people throats for hours)- there was a fascinating ceramics exhibition on display which explored the various perspectives surrounding the idea of "normalcy". So glad I made it there.

Another fun thing I got to do was see Justin Townes Earle (Steve Earle's son) at a great, small venue on the west side of town. Killer music- I highly recommend. Oh, did I mention that I went with Henry Horenstien. Yes, the man whose photographic texts taught me almost everything I technically know about photography at age 14-24 was rockin' out with me at a folk concert. This Crazy life.

A few images from my walk:

Happy Monday!

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