Archive for April, 2012

“Change(less): Photography and the Ephemeral Made Permanent”

Monday, April 30th, 2012

What gives a photograph historical value? Does the original intent of the photographer matter, or is it the passage of time that counts?  Is there meaning in the “fixing” of a transient image?

These questions are the foundation of Change(less): Photography and the Ephemeral Made Permanent, an exhibition presented by LSU Libraries Special Collections.

Put on in conjunction with the LSU Museum of Art’s exhibition “A Tale of Two Cities: Eugene Atget’s Paris and Berenice Abbott’s New York,” “Change(less)” is on display from May 14 through July 21, 2012, in the Lecture Hall in Hill Memorial Library.

“Change(less)” examines images of people and events from a variety of photographers, both professional and amateur, who share a command of the photographic technology of their day and an eye for a “good shot.”  Images are paired to illustrate two photographers’ perspectives on one subject. The intent of the photographers – to document changes in modes of transportation, public holidays, material culture, or simply to record a visually interesting subject – is unknown. The ephemeral nature of the subjects juxtaposed against the semi-permanent aspect of the photographic medium inspires contemplation of both the roles of photographer intent and the passage of time in the categorization of photographs as historically significant documents.

The work of professional photographers Andrew and Howard Lytle of Baton Rouge’s Lytle Studio; Fonville Winans, of Fonville Studio, also of Baton Rouge, and; Henry and Earl Norman of the Norman Studio, of Natchez, is on display. Amateur photographers, such as those whose images make up the New Orleans Negative Exposures Collection, are also included.

The LSU Museum of Art’s exhibition, “A Tale of Two Cities,” showcases two 20th century photographers – Atget and Abbott – who intentionally documented their respective cities, fully aware of the magnitude of the forces of change already underway during their lifetimes. This exhibition will be on display at the LSU Museum of Art from May 20 – July 22, 2012.  It was organized by the Syracuse University Art Galleries.

IMAGE: Canal Street from Robertson Street during the streetcar motormen and conductors strike, New Orleans, LA., 1929. From New Orleans Negative Exposures and Prints, LLMVC.

Domestic Dwellings & Political Dealings: Building Louisiana

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012

Two different angles on building Louisiana–architecture and politics–  will be the focus of two free lectures presented by LSU Libraries’ Special Collections in conjunction with the exhibition “State of Transition: Louisiana circa 1812.” Both presentations will be held in the Lecture Hall at Hill Memorial Library, and are free and open to the public.

Jay D. Edwards will present “Louisiana Vernacular Architecture in Transition” on Thursday, April 26 at 12 noon. This is a “brown bag” talk; visitors are invited to bring their own lunch, and drinks and light refreshments will be provided. Professor Edwards is the Director of the Fred B. Kniffen Cultural Resources Laboratory, LSU Department of Geography and Anthropology.

On Sunday, April 29 at 3:00 pm,  join Special Collections for birthday cake to mark the admission of Louisiana to the Union on April 30, 1812, and attend a lecture by Charles N. Elliott,  “’Incorporated into the United States, and admitted as soon as possible to the Principles of the Federal Constitution’:  Promises, Perceptions, and Problems of Louisiana Statehood in 1812.”  Mr. Elliott teaches Louisiana history at Southeastern Louisiana University.

The exhibition “State of Transition” will be on display through June 2, 2012, at Hill Memorial Library. A variety of topics are examined, from daily life to politics, during Louisiana’s transformation from territory to state in the early 19th century.

Hill Memorial Library is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays. When classes are in session, the library is open Tuesday evenings until 8 p.m. Paid parking is available at the Visitors’ Center, Memorial Tower, and Mike the Tiger’s Habitat.  For more information, visit the Special Collections’ Web site at www.lib.lsu.edu/special.

 

Image: Plan of the City and Suburbs of New Orleans from an actual survey made in 1815 by J. Tanesse City Surveyor


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