October 19 in NYC: Susan Bright with Lyle Rexer on “Auto Focus: The Self-Portrait in Contemporary Photography”

TUESDAY, OCTOBER 19th, 7 pm at the School of Visual Arts Auditorium (Photo ID required for entrance):

Please join Dear Dave, for a discussion with Susan Bright and Lyle Rexer on the release of Brights’ latest book, AUTO FOCUS: The Self Portrait in Contemporary Photography. A champagne reception will follow in the lobby where copies of the new book will be available for purchase and signing by Bright and other artists from the book.

Photographer and SVA faculty member Susan Bright will host a panel discussion featuring artists from her new book Auto Focus: The Self Portrait in Contemporary Photography (The Monacelli Press, 2010). Featuring the work of 75 contemporary photographers from around the world for whom self-portraiture is a central part of their work, the book explores issues of identity–national, sexual, racial, personal and artistic. Bright previously served as the assistant curator of photographs at the National Portrait Gallery in London and as acting director for the MA in Photography Program (Historic and Contemporary) at Sotheby’s Institute of Art in London and is the editor of Art Photography Now (Aperture, 2005). A book signing and reception will follow the discussion.

“Auto Focus,” features the work of 75 contemporary photographers from around the world for whom self-portraiture is a central part of their work. Issues of identity – national, sexual, racial, personal or artistic – are key to all the images featured in this book. “Auto Focus” offers an impressive survey of established and emerging contemporary photographers through the fascinating lens of self-portraiture. It features new work from emerging artists alongside photographs from more established big names, including Elina Brotherus, Nan Goldin, Catherine Opie, Jemima Stehli, Gillian Wearing and Erwin Wurm and includes more than 250 luscious images.

Susan Bright is a curator and writer. She has taught extensively in the UK and convened major international conferences and seminars on many aspects of art and photography. She was formerly Assistant Curator of Photographs at the National Portrait Gallery, Curator at the Association of Photographers and Acting Director for the MA Photography (Historic and Contemporary) at Sotheby’s Institute of Art, London. She is also the author of Art Photography Now, which was published by Thames & Hudson in 2005. She currently lives and works in New York and teaches at the School of Visual Arts.

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Lyle Rexer was educated at the University of Michigan, Columbia University, and Merton College, Oxford University, which he attended as a Rhodes Scholar. He is the recipient of a 2008-9 grant from the Andy Warhol Foundation and is the author of several books, including The Edge of Vision: The Rise of Abstraction in Photography (2009); and How to Look at Outsider Art (2005). Rexer has also published many catalogue essays and contributes articles to a variety of publications, such as The New York Times, Modern Painters, Parkett, Tate, etc. and Aperture . As a curator, he has organized exhibitions in the United States and internationally, including “The Edge of Vision: Abstraction in Contemporary Photography,” and “Fernando Canovas,” at the Insitiut Valencia d’Art Modern. Rexer teaches at the School of Visual Arts in New York City and is a columnist for Photograph magazine.

SVA is located at 333 West 23rd Street in NYC; this lecture is presented by SVA’s BFA Photography Department.

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