The Arnold and Augusta Newman
Lecture Series in Photography

The Lowe Art Museum is proud to host The Arnold and Augusta Newman Lecture Series in Photography, which invites distinguished photographers to the University of Miami to discuss their work.

Ring girls. From the Framing Beauty series Bronx NY 2014

Deborah Willis:

Re-Imagining Beauty

Thursday, October 23, 2014

: 7 p.m., UM Field House
1245 Dauer Dr., Coral Gables, Florida, 33146
(Adjacent to the BankUnited Center)

Reception & book signing: 8 p.m.

Admission: Lowe Members & UM Students: Complimentary; Non-Members: $10

Complimentary Parking at Pavia Garage

RSVP: RSVP at . Admissions at the door will be cash only.

Parking: Complimentary parking available onsite

Framing Beauty explores the contested ways in which the concept of American beauty has been represented in historical and contemporary contexts through a diverse range of media including photography, film, fashion, advertising, and other forms of popular culture such as music and the boxing ring. Throughout the Western history of art and image-making, beauty as an aesthetic impulse has been simultaneously idealized and challenged, and the relationship between beauty and art has become increasingly complex within contemporary art and popular culture. This lecture challenges the relationship between beauty and art by examining the representation of beauty as an act fraught with meanings and attitudes about class, race, gender, and aesthetics. Growing up in the beauty shop was indeed a transformative experience for all who entered.. not only for hair styles but mind and body.  I believe these spaces are still political spaces… Visiting beauty shops today, I hear women discuss politics and personal life; they discuss issues concerning their communities and education of their children.  They also encourage women, both immigrant and American born, to value their lives and the work they produce—from health care to foodways. My project focuses on framing beauty as a concept.  I like to think of this project as evolving as I looked closely at the history of photography and how the photographer and the subject POSED concepts of beauty.  I often remind my readers and viewers that I am not defining beauty… I  like to see this project as one that has a ‘feel good’ response as viewers/readers imagine ways to self identify and not define themselves based on popular culture

Deborah Willis, PhD, is the Chair of the Department of Photography & Imaging at the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University and has an affiliated appointment as a University Professor with the College of Arts and Sciences, Africana Studies. She was a Guggenheim Fellow, a Fletcher Fellow, and a MacArthur Fellow. Willis is the author of Reflections In Black and Let Your Motto Be Resistance. Her book Michelle Obama: The First Lady in Photographs received the 2010 NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work—Biography/Autobiography. She has exhibited her photographs at the Zora Neale Hurston Museum in Eatonville, Florida and just released two books: a co-authored book entitled Envisioning Emancipation: Black Americans and the End of Slavery, published by Temple University Press, and Out [o] Fashion Photography: Embracing Beauty, published by the Henry Art Gallery, University of Washington Press.

Previous lecturers include:

Elliott Erwitt
February 13, 2014

Jerry Uelsmann: Process and Perception
October 23, 2013

Mary Ellen Mark
February 28, 2013

Sally Mann
February 16, 2012

Duane Michals: Photography and Reality
March 3, 2011

William Wegman - Three Mistakes
October 21, 2010

Generously sponsored by the Arnold and Augusta Newman Foundation