A couple of weeks ago, our advanced photography students had the chance to meet guest artist Gabriel García Román. Gabriel is a queer and Mexican artist living in New York City. His family immigrated to the states when he was a child to live in Chicago.
His portraits are not just a portrait, but a physical object to hold and contemplate. He explained to the students how he is constantly questioning the inherent flatness of photography. Through this process, he has developed unique ways of portraying a person by weaving, folding, cutting, interlacing prints, or collaging.
With the Defining You series he handles the subject’s childhood experiences that were formative or conjure memories to relive. To achieve this meshing of past and present, he weaves photographs from the subject’s childhood together with their portrait, creating intricate patterns that inform distinct and complex personal identities.
In Queer Icons, he decides to portray the many facets of the gender and queer spectrum, a community that is generally under-represented in the art world. He uses the language of Renaissance, Flemish, and Christian Orthodox paintings to elevate these figures to that of an icon. The portraits were prepared using a photogravure and chine-collé technique resulting in a single and unique print.
At the end of the talk, students had the chance to talk one-on-one with the artist. They shared some of their images and contact sheets, and discussed progress on their final projects.
All photos: Roy Baizán
Our ICP at THE POINT Monday preteen class recently had some fun nature-inspired opportunities outside of the classroom. First our students walked around Hunts Point, collecting specimens for an Anna Atkins-inspired photogram project. It was amazing to see the vastly different plants and flowers that were available just around this urban landscape.
Our class also had the chance to visit the Central Park Conservancy, a jewel in the city, often overlooked. The students devoured the landscape and close up details with their cameras, including the beautiful late-spring tulips. The first images of our outing are beginning to emerge and the images are striking and full of detail.
All photo credits: ICP Teaching Assistants Julianna D’Into, Lauren Marsh, and Corey Torpie
This semester the ICP at THE POINT Thursday teen class took a field trip to shoot in Central Park’s Conservatory Garden and the northern portion of the park. This class is themed My City My Voice, in which students are prompted to make images that observe the physical environments that surround them and ultimately allow them to explore personal ideas as they relate to growing up in the city.
Students were asked to observe what they felt drawn to shoot on the trip— to take note if they found themselves leaning toward street photography, landscapes, portraits and/or abstracted images. This trip acted as a companion to the week’s homework shooting assignment, which asked them to use their cameras to intentionally explore a specific environment of their choice.
All photo credits: Ifetayo Abdus-Salam, ICP Faculty
What Is Your Story? was the theme for this winter’s teen class on Thursdays. Through this theme we asked our young artists to begin thinking about really inspires them, what upsets them, what strikes them, and what holds their interest. This was a true test finding out what makes them individuals in this technology-driven era.
When we go out to shoot, we ask the students to pause and make sure their apertures/f-stops are set correctly for this moment they’re capturing, which helps ensure that they’ll get a good negative.
Faculty member Mark Nevers says, “I wanted them to take that time and understand the power in the image…the understanding of making your mark in time.”
The students take all they have learned in this photography class thus far along with the wonderful, informative instructors and their creative peers. Add a bit of patience to the mix and lots of great work will come out of this class!
Photo Credits: Roy Baizan, ICP at THE POINT Teaching Assistant and Mark Nevers, ICP at THE POINT Faculty
This winter semester at ICP at THE POINT, the Tuesday preteen class visited the Studio Museum in Harlem.
The theme of this term’s class is Roots. The students have been learning manual camera functions such as aperture, shutter speed, and proper exposure, as well as how to print in a black-and-white film darkroom. Through their photography, they have shown interest in documenting people, places, and things of significant meaning, which are rooted within their lives.
The students participated in a group discussion featuring the museum’s current exhibitions Circa 1970, Black Cowboy, and Excerpt. Discussion topics included significant changes in the history of representation, redefining stereotypes and subcultures through race, the meaning and power of language, and the invention of new mythologies in contemporary culture.
Photo Credits: Tania Yenidjeian, ICP at THE POINT Faculty
During the first weeks of the winter Monday class, the preteens at ICP at THE POINT spent time using their cameras, started printing in the darkroom, and visited the Museum of the City of New York. With photographic exercises around THE POINT and a walk around the neighborhood, students practiced using their cameras working towards correct exposure and experimenting with the use of aperture and shutter speed.
The images they create at home have further put these techniques into practice while honing in on various parts of their lives to tell a story about themselves through their images. While still photographing at home, students spend the majority of time in class making contact sheets and enlarging images from their negatives.
In a trip to the Museum of the City of New York, students were taken on a tour of exhibits Activist New York and New York at Its Core. In both exhibits students looked at photographs taken in the Bronx during the 1970s and discussed how photographs documented and contributed to community social activism. Through exploring the photographs, students discussed what was taking place in the Bronx during that time and how the community came together to take care of itself.
All photographs, credits: ICP Faculty Meryl Feigenberg and ICP Teaching Assistants Vida Lercari, Demi Vera, and Colleen Lidz
Throughout the fall term our Thursday teen class took shooting trips around the Bronx and to Central Park to observe the city during the changing fall landscape. Most of the students in the class chose to focus their work this term on observations of their neighborhoods and communities. It was interesting to hear students explain their intentions; some described the desire to present alternatives to popularly conceived notions of the Bronx, while others simply wanted to depict daily activity in the city around them.
All photo credits: Ife Abdus-Salam, ICP Faculty