Photography & place symposium

Subject and object in 21st century photography

Image: YANAGI Miwa Windswept women 2 2009, Laserchrome photograph Gift of Geoff and Vicki Ainsworth 2009 © YANAGI Miwa

What do subject and object mean (or what can they mean) in photography in the 21st century?

Photography is a constantly mutating medium, reacting to (and sometime precipitating) changes in art, society, politics and technology. In the 21st century, photographic practice has come into increasingly close contact with other art forms and, through the virtual environment, an increasingly diverse audience.

However, few new theoretical frameworks for considering contemporary photography have arisen to push photographic theory beyond the seminal work of writers such as Barthes, Benjamin, Sontag and Krauss. This symposium, the first of a new annual series of symposia dedicated to photography, explores new ways of thinking about the medium in the 21st century. Have new frameworks for considering contemporary photography arisen? If so, what are they?

The exhibition Photography & place examines recent Australian landscape photography and its relationship to ideas of place and culture. A particular concern of the exhibition is to identify the role of the photographer as a mediator and storyteller. The exhibition includes work from eighteen artists such as Bill Henson, Jon Rhodes, Lynn Silverman, Simryn Gill, Ricky Maynard, David Stephenson, Rosemary Laing and Paul Ogier.

Symposium chair:
Judy Annear, senior curator photographs, Art Gallery of NSW

Invited speakers:
Associate Professor David Stephenson, University of Tasmania School of Art
Dr Kyla McFarlane, Centre for Contemporary Photography
Dr Martyn Jolly, Australian National University
Dr Daniel Palmer, Monash University

Date: Saturday 9 April 2011, 11am–4pm

Venue: Domain Theatre, Art Gallery of New South Wales

Cost: Non-members $65, Members $55, Students $30 (includes lunch and afternoon drinks)