Kenyon students selected the images for a new exhibit that shows how photography has contributed to the visual cultural of the United States from the mid-19th century to today.
More than 100 images from a variety of collections have been brought together for Daguerreotype to Digital: American Photography, opening April 3 at the Greenslade Special Collections and Archives in Olin Library.
Students taking “History of American Photography” each chose an image to research, wrote a label to display at the exhibit, and assisted with the installation. Extended labels written by students on selected photographs will be accessible through an online exhibition component.
Along with pieces from the Greenslade Special Collections and Archives, the photos come from the Gund Gallery, the Richard M. Ross Museum at Ohio Wesleyan University, three private lenders, and the Michael D. Bulmash Collection from the 1966 Kenyon alumnus.
Erin Corrales-Diaz, a visiting art history instructor and Marilyn Yarbrough Dissertation Fellow, is teaching the class. She teamed with Austin Porter, a post-doctorate fellow at the Center for the Study of American Democracy, to curate the exhibit.
The photographs served many purposes, from fine art and documentary evidence to science and portraiture. Yet viewers will note the aesthetics employed across these genres have commonalities, Corrales-Diaz said. As a result, developing meaning out of an individual photographic image requires the consideration of multiple factors, including presentational context, historical era and supplementary text.
The show runs through Sept. 30. Exhibit hours are 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. An opening celebration will be held Friday, April 3, from 4 to 6 p.m., and a talk with the curators will be held Thursday, April 9, at 11:10 a.m. at the Greenslade Special Collections and Archives.