Maurice Berger, CADVC, Latest “Race Story” in The New York Times

In the latest essay for his Race Stories column in The New York Times, Maurice Berger, research professor at the Center for Art, Design and Visual Culture, examines the shifting attitudes toward the Confederate battle flag. “The image was at once mundane and historic. In Alabama last Wednesday, on the order of Gov. Robert Bentley, workers took down the Confederate battle flag on the grounds of the state Capitol and were photographed as they did. The camera, whose role it was to record a reality — and thus to make visible its compelling details of the world — now documented a symbol’s imminent invisibility,” notes Berger, but adds, “In the end, retiring an icon is not the same as dealing with the underlying institutional, emotional, economic and historic complications that it represents.”

Read “Making a Confederate Flag Invisible” and view the photographs at The New York Times Lens blog.

Berger’s Race Stories column, which appears monthly on The New York Times website, is “a continuing exploration of the relationship of race to photographic portrayals of race.”

Maurice Berger, CADVC, Discusses “Revolution of the Eye” on WYPR

061915_bergerMaurice Berger, research professor and chief curator at the Center for Art, Design and Visual Culture, was interviewed by WYPR’s Culture Editor for Maryland Morning, Tom Hall, about Revolution of the Eye: Modern Art and the Birth of American Television, an exhibition now on display at the Jewish Museum in New York. Berger curated the exhibition, which has been co-organized by the CADVC and the Jewish Museum, and authored the companion book by the same name, published by Yale University Press.

Revolution of the Eye is the first exhibition to explore how avant-garde art influenced and shaped the look and content of network television in its formative years, from the late 1940s to the mid-1970s. “Television and modern art became mutually beneficial forces, starting really at the very early days of television,” Berger explained to Hall. “The pioneers of television…looked to modern art—they were fascinated by it—as something that could help them perhaps prove that television was a discerning medium.”

The exhibition will visit UMBC’s Center for Art, Design and Visual Culture in Fall 2016.

To hear the full interview, which originally aired on WYPR’s Maryland Morning on Friday, June 19, click here.

Maurice Berger, CADVC, Latest “Race Story” in The New York Times

In the latest essay for his Race Stories column in The New York Times, Maurice Berger, research professor at the Center for Art, Design and Visual Culture, examines the work of Charles “Teenie” Harris, an African American staff photographer for the Pittsburgh Courier from the 1930s through the 1970s. Now held in the archives of the Carnegie Museum of Art, a selection of 80,000 images by Harris are now on display in “Teenie Harris Photographs: Cars,” second in a series of exhibitions that began with “Teenie Harris Photographs: Civil Rights Perspectives.” The museum “asked writers — including poets, playwrights and historians — to respond to ‘the social, cultural, and political content’ of Mr. Harris’s photos,” notes Berger.

Read “Past and Present Collide in Pittsburgh” and view the photographs at The New York Times Lens blog.

Berger’s Race Stories column, which appears monthly on The New York Times website, is “a continuing exploration of the relationship of race to photographic portrayals of race.”

Maurice Berger, CADVC, Latest “Race Story” in The New York Times

In the latest essay for his Race Stories column in The New York Times, Maurice Berger, research professor at the Center for Art, Design and Visual Culture, examines a new exhibition at the Bronx Museum of Art, “Three Photographers From the Bronx: Jules Aarons, Morton Broffman and Joe Conzo,” which opens Thursday, February 26. “Over the past 40 years,” writes Berger, “our collective view of the Bronx has all too often embraced the media-driven myth of its inexorable decline. For many, the blight, addiction and poverty that plagued parts of the South Bronx in the 1970s have come to symbolize the whole borough. But as Mr. Conzo’s photographs suggest, the reality of the Bronx has been far more complicated. They demonstrate the power of courage, cultural expression and political advocacy to sustain even the most endangered neighborhoods.”

Read “Complicating the Picture of Urban Life” and view the photographs at The New York Times Lens blog.

Berger’s Race Stories column, which appears monthly on The New York Times website, is “a continuing exploration of the relationship of race to photographic portrayals of race.”

“Revolution of the Eye” Receives Funding from the National Endowment for the Arts

Revolution of the Eye MicrositeThe National Endowment for the Arts has awarded $40,000 in support of the exhibition Revolution of the Eye: Modern Art and the Birth of American Television, curated by Maurice Berger, research professor and chief curator of the Center for Art, Design and Visual Culture (CADVC). The exhibition has been co-organized by the CADVC and The Jewish Museum in New York, which will administer the grant funds.

The exhibition, which will open May 1, 2015 at The Jewish Museum before embarking on a national tour, addresses the modernist aesthetic and conceptual principles that have influenced American television from its inception, and examines how early television introduced new trends in art, design, and avant-garde art. The exhibition will include photographs, paintings, sculptures, prints, conceptual art, excerpts of historic TV programs and film, memorabilia, posters, magazines, books, clothing, comic books, and toys by artists such as Herbert Ferber, Lee Friedlander, Allan Kaprow, Ellsworth Kelly, Roy Lichtenstein, Agnes Martin, Robert Morris, Ben Shahn, and Andy Warhol, as well as works by designers Lou Dorfsman and Saul Bass and architect Eero Saarinen. Also on view will be clips of TV interviews with John Cage, Salvador Dali, Willem de Kooning, Marcel Duchamp, Roy Lichtenstein, George Segal, and others.

The campus community is encouraged to participate in a survey at the exhibition’s website. Click here to share your culture interests and familiarity with television design.

Maurice Berger, CADVC, Awarded Grant from Creative Capital | Warhol Foundation

Maurice BergerMaurice Berger, research professor and chief curator of the Center for Art, Design and Visual Culture, has been awarded a $30,000 Arts Writers Grant from Creative Capital | Andy Warhol Foundation.

The grant supports research for Berger’s monthly column, Race Stories, for the Lens Blog of The New York Times. The blog explores the relationship of photography to concepts, themes, and social or regional issues about race not usually covered in the mainstream media.

Berger plans to conduct research on Robert Frank, focusing on contact sheets, notes, and shooting scripts for a two-part essay on Frank’s representations of race in The Americans. He will also conduct research for essays exploring parallel developments in African American, Latino, and Asian American photo-based art and photography from the 1960s to the present, focusing on the ways this work has challenged stereotypes and prevailing ideas about identity. More about the award can be found here.

Designed to support writing about contemporary art, as well as to create a broader audience for arts writing, the Arts Writers Grant Program aims to strengthen the field as a whole and to ensure that critical writing remains a valued mode of engaging the visual arts.

 

Revolution of the Eye in Broadway World

Revolution of the Eye MicrositeRevolution of Eye, an exhibition organized by the Center for Art, Design and Visual Culture and the Jewish Museum in New York, and curated by Maurice Berger, research professor and chief curator at the CADVC, received coverage in Broadway World on October 1. (Click here to read the article). The exhibition will open in May 2015 and will be the first to explore how avant-garde art influenced and shaped the look and content of network television in its formative years, from the late 1940s to the mid-1970s. A microsite that provides a preview to the exhibition is now available here.