November 19th, 2013

ICP Appoints Mark Lubell New Executive Director

The board of trustees of the International Center of Photography (ICP) has named Mark Lubell to be its new executive director. He replaces Mark Robbins, who left the job as director of the museum and school after 19 months to become President and CEO of the American Academy in Rome.

Lubell was Director of Magnum Photos from 2004 until 2011. During his tenure, he negotiated the sale of the Magnum press print archive to Michael Dell and his investment firm, MSD Capital, and its placement at the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas. In 2008, he lead the “Access to Life Project,” in which eight Magnum photographers documented the work of The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, and also lead initiatives to bring new revenue to the photo agency. Since leaving Magnum, he has been working as a consultant.

In a joint statement announcing Lubell’s appointment, Caryl S. Englander, board chair, and Jeffrey A. Rosen, board president, said, “Mark’s deep experience with photography, his aptitude with digital technology, and his managerial skills qualify him especially well to lead ICP forward, as we prepare to celebrate our 40th anniversary in 2014. Mark is a forward thinker whose vision of ICP’s central role in photography in the digital age builds on the spirit of our founder, Cornell Capa.” ICP has had three previous executive directors. Willis “Buzz” Hartshorn, who succeeded founder Cornell Capa in running the museum and school, stepped down in 2012 for health reasons.

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November 6th, 2013

ICP Executive Director Leaves Job After 19 Months

Mark Robbins, executive director of the International Center of Photography, is leaving November 15, the ICP board of trustees announced October 30. On the same day, the American Academy in Rome announced Robbins had been hired as its President and CEO, effective January 2014. Robbins became ICP executive director May 5, 2012, succeeding Willis “Buzz” Hartshorn, the director since 1994, who had resigned for health reasons. The International Center of Photography includes a photo school, museum, community programs.

In its statement announcing Robbins’ departure, Jeffrey A. Rosen, president of the Board of Trustees at ICP, said, “On behalf of the board, we thank Mark for his service to ICP, and wish him the best in his new endeavor.”

Debby Hirshman, the chief operating officer of ICP, told PDN she is serving as the acting director until a new executive director is hired. She said she has been in her role for two months; she had been a consultant to ICP since 2009. She said the search for a new executive director is “well underway” and the board of trustees is “already meeting with people and we hope to have a new executive director shortly.”

Hirshman declined to discuss what challenges the new executive director might face, whether or not the ICP museum and school will remain in its current location, and whether or not a new capital campaign will be conducted by the incoming executive director.

“I think people should feel that it’s an exciting time for ICP,” Hirshman said. As examples, she said that film director Oliver Stone is coming to give a public talk with ICP Chief Curator Brian Wallis, who curated the show “Who Shot JFK?”; the exhibition “Roman Vishniac Revisited” which debuted at ICP is currently traveling and Shirin Neshat, the Iranian visual artist, will receive an award in January as part of ICP’s “Spotlight” events. Hirshman said, “It’s a wonderful opportunity to be the executive director of ICP.”

Related articles:

ICP Names New Director to Succeed Hartshorn

ICP Director Willis Hartshorn to Step Down

 

May 2nd, 2013

29th Annual ICP Infinity Awards Honors Art, Photo-J, and Photos That Mix Both

“There is no more meaningful honor than one given by one’s peers,” said photographer David Goldblatt as he accepted the Cornell Capa Lifetime Achievement award last night. Goldblatt’s was the last of the awards given at the 29th Annual International Center of Photography Infinity Awards, an event honoring achievements in photography. The awards presentation, held at Pier Sixty in New York City, is the primary fundraising event for the International Center of Photography (ICP), including its museum, photo school,  educational programs, student scholarships and community outreach.

In his acceptance speech, Goldblatt apologized for voicing a note of criticism about his award: Its name. “Lifetime Achievement,” he said, implies “one has reached the end of the road,” suggesting the winner wouldn’t be coming back to accept another award in “15 or 20 years.” Goldblatt, who was born in 1930, said that if it were renamed the “Work in Progress Award,” the recipient might be encouraged to work harder, albeit “in a state of geriatric dissolution.” Mark Robbins, the executive director of ICP and the master of ceremonies for the evening, then told Goldblatt, “We look forward to much, much more.”

“Work in Progress” also describes recent images by the Young Photographer Award winner, Kitra Cahana, who has begun to follow “a new trajectory in my photography,” she said. A photojournalist who has shot for National Geographic and The New York Times, she has over the past year taken intimate and quiet photos of her father in his hospital bed. As a result of a stroke, he is paralyzed from the eyes down. Cahana explained in the video that preceded her speech that her father, a rabbi, now dictates his sermons “letter by letter, blink by blink.”

Actor Jeff Bridges, winner of a Special Achievement Award, praised Cahane’s work in his acceptance speech. Bridges, who shoots film on a Widelux camera to photograph on movie sets, offered a toast to film as well as to the moments photography captures.

David Guttenfelder, the Associated Press photographer who has photographed widely in North Korea for the past year and a half, won the Photojournalism award. Other award winners view photojournalism with skepticism. Cristina de Middel won the Publication prize for her book The Afronauts, which envisions Zambia’s aborted attempt to create a space program in 1964. She said she had worked as a photojournalist until she became frustrated with the media. “Two years ago, I started messing with fact and fiction,” and decided to try “telling stories in a new way.” The video interview that preceded her speech showed archival news photos of the space program, as well as real documents she incorporated into the book.  (Like all the videos shown last night, it was created for the event by MediaStorm. A longer form of each video can be viewed on the MediaStorm website.)

Mishka Henner, winner of the Art prize, has doctored iconic images by Robert Frank (a past Cornell Capa Award winner) by removing significant sections. He has also explored oil fields by collecting satellite images and gathered images from Google Street View for a study of sites where sex workers have been solicited. “It’s funny. Do photographers own what they photograph?” Henner asks in his video interview. “It’s raw material for me, just as Frank’s woman in an elevator was raw material to him.”

The award for Applied/Fashion/Advertising was given to Erik Madigan Heck, whose clients include Neiman Marcus, Eres, Vanity Fair and W. “I create an image purely to create a beautiful image. Sometimes I don’t show the product,” he said in his interview.

The ICP Trustees Award was given to Pat Schoenfeld, who was hired by ICP founder Cornell Capa in 1974, shortly after he opened the museum. Schoenfeld launched the museum book store, and over the years worked on membership, publications, publicity and other programs before she left ICP to launch the ARTS cable service. She has served on ICP’s board since 1987. She told the audience that she thinks of herself as “the grandmother of ICP,” having seen it through its childhood under founder Cornell Capa, and its adolescence under the direction of Willis Hartshorn, who stepped down last year. She said, “I look forward to the coming years with our new director, Mark Robbins.”

This year’s Infinity Award winners were selected by Susan Bright, writer and curator; Douglas Nickel, professor at Brown University; and Ramon Revert, editor in chief and creative director, Editorial RM. They made selections from nominations submitted by a nine-person committee that included Isolde Brielmaier, curator at Savannah Collect of Art and Design Museum of Art; Frank Kalero, publisher of OjodePez and director of GetxoPhoto; Michele McNally, assistant managing editor for photography, The New York Times; Marleos Krijnen of FOAM in Amsterdam; photographer Facundode Zuviria; Carol Squiers, ICP curator, and others.

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April 30th, 2013

A Tribute to David Goldblatt, ICP’s 2013 Lifetime Achievement Honoree

David Goldblatt, The Transported of the KwaNdebele: Travellers from KwaNdebele buying weekly season tickets at the PUTCO bus depot in Marabastad, Pretoria, 1983. © David Goldbatt/The Goodman Gallery

The Transported of the KwaNdebele: Travellers from KwaNdebele buying weekly season tickets at the PUTCO bus depot in Marabastad, Pretoria, 1983. © David Goldbatt/The Goodman Gallery

Imagine photographs by Robert Frank and Henri Cartier-Bresson.  Wait a moment, then imagine some more by Diane Arbus and others by Sebastian Salgado.  Good.  Being the sort of person who reads this blog, you probably just conjured a dozen or more vividly remembered images in your mind’s eye.

Now imagine a photograph by David Goldblatt.  Thought so.  Unless you’re a fellow South African or one of his fans, you probably drew a blank.  He’s one of the world’s most honored living photographers, a man who is greatly respected and, yet, is little known.  It’s a paradox.

On Wednesday evening, when the International Center of Photography [ICP] confers on him its Cornell Capa Lifetime Achievement Award, Goldblatt will collect yet another prestigious award.  He’ll add this to his resume, right above the 2006 Hasselblad Award, 2009 Henri Cartier-Bresson Award, and the 2010 Lucie Award for Lifetime Achievement.

As prestigious as those honors surely are, they’re little more than the icing on a magnificent cake.  Over a 50-year career, Goldblatt has been the subject of exhibitions at major museums in Europe, Africa, and North America, including solo shows at the Museum of Modern Art, in 1998, and the Jewish Museum, in 2010.  In addition, leading publishers of photography have produced a dozen books devoted to his work.

It’s an impressive list of accomplishments by any measure.  So, why isn’t Goldblatt’s photography as well known as his name?  And what’s his photography all about anyway?  (more…)

May 3rd, 2012

International Center of Photography Names New Director to Succeed Hartshorn

The International Center of Photography (ICP) board of trustees today named Mark Robbins, dean of the School of Architecture at Syracuse University, as the new executive director of ICP. Robbins will succeed Willis E. “Buzz” Hartshorn, who announced last year he would be leaving his role for medical reasons.

Before joining Syracuse, Robbins served as director of design for the National Endowment for the Arts and as a curator of architecture at the Wexner Center for the Arts in Columbus, Ohio. In a statement,  Jeffrey Rosen, president of the ICP board of trustees, said the board was impressed with his “vision of the transformational power of images” and noted that in his previous positions, Robbins “made a significant impact as a leader and a manager, and as an artist and an educator.”

To see the full news story, visit PDNOnline.com.

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ICP Director Willis Hartshorn to Step Down