Summer Exhibit: Denver Metro Photo Exhibits to See This Season
II recently committed to learning my mother’s Canon Ae1 Program 35mm camera, which she bought in 1983 or 1984, almost a decade before I was born.
It’s slow and that’s a good thing.
I learned the basics of photography on a DSLR in high school, but loading film and getting the settings right all at once is harder than I expected. For the past two years, like so many others, I’ve spent my time on pandemic hobbies that were insane. Dozens of banana breads, new-to-me pasta dishes, YouTube dance lessons. Anything that might serve as a distraction from the imploding world I was covering for the paper.
Now, as the world returns to normal, I find that I want to spend my time focusing all my attention on one thing. This old Canon is testing my focus. The film needs to be perfectly aligned with the teeth of the camera so that it passes through the spool after each shot, and you better know how much light you’re letting through your lens.
Each photograph seems precious, carefully chosen. Unlike the flour, sugar and butter I randomly tossed into a bowl two summers ago – the eye measurements were pretty good, who cares? — I find a way to come back into each moment and agree to be fully aware of all that is in front of me.
My personal summer of looking through a new lens comes at just the right time. The metropolitan area is brimming with photography-focused exhibits this summer. They remind us that a new look is useful, even necessary, to progress and move forward.
From the women who shaped photojournalism to a more abstract art form, there’s plenty to see near Aurora over the next few months.
Modern women/modern vision
Denver Art Museum | Until August 28 | Tickets: denverartmuseum.org
Women photographers have had a profound impact on the medium. It’s easy to see in “Modern Women/Modern Vision” at the Denver Art Museum, on display all summer. There were fewer obstacles for women with cameras than in other art forms, but it is perhaps their perspective that brings most to this exhibition, which is divided into six parts. Photographs by famous photographers such as Margaret Bourke-White and Dorothea Lange are breathtaking, educational and inspiring.
Colorado Center for the Photographic Arts | Until June 25 | Information: www.cpacphoto.org
We have a complex relationship with hair. From politics to beauty standards, five photographers and artists take part in “Culture of Hair” to explore how multifaceted and complex it can be. Neurologist Rohina Hoffman’s series of portraits show just how much our hair is a part of who we are, while visual artist DM Witman shares how hair is intertwined with personal loss and grief – if you’ve ever thought the bangs were a good idea, so you know. Other female artists in the exhibition examine culture and beauty in ways that many of us can relate to on some level. The exhibition is presented until June 25. A panel discussion with the artists on the CPAC website is as revealing and educational as the exhibition itself.
Curious visions towards abstract photography
Denver Art Museum | Until June 19 | Tickets: denverartmuseum.org
This summer, the Denver Art Museum is taking a notable step toward bringing photography to the institution with the inaugural two-part exhibition at the new Delisa & Anthony Mayer Galleries, spanning more than 2,800 square feet at sixth floor of the new Martin Building. “Curious Visions: Toward Abstract Photography” includes images from the past century, showing how the medium and its relationship to abstraction has changed throughout history. For budding photographers, check out the galleries’ ‘Through the Lens’, an exhibit that explores how cameras and lenses work and how photographs are made.
Georgia O’Keeffe, photographer
Denver Art Museum | July 3 – November 6 | Tickets: denverartmuseum.org
You know her for her vibrant paintings of Southwestern flowers and landscapes, but northern New Mexico icon Georgia O’Keeffe’s career also includes other media, such as photography, which will be on display more later this summer at the Denver Art Museum. Lisa Volpe, curator of photography at the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, spent three years researching, analyzing and studying more than 400 photographs by O’Keeffe. The result is an exhibition that reframes the artist, through his own lens. The DAM will also offer programming related to O’Keeffe’s photos throughout the summer and fall.
Eye to eye: portraits of pride, strength, beauty
Fulginiti Pavilion at CU Anschutz | Featured Now | Information: www.cuanschutz.edu
You can tell a lot about a person, their life and their story in a single portrait. Take a few minutes to study it well and you will find that a portrait is much more than a photograph of a person. In “Eye to Eye: Portraits of Pride, Strength, Beauty,” Carey Candrian, associate professor of internal medicine at the University of Colorado’s Anschutz Medical Campus, presents photographs of nearly three dozen LGBTQ women aged 59 at 85 years old. a story of these women, but also of the data that Candrian has collected throughout his career. A disclaimer: Due to COVID-19 precautions, this exhibition is only accessible to badged CU Anschutz faculty, students, and staff, but Candrian’s work may be displayed in a public gallery or later. This year.