Shelley Rice's lecture will describe the many facets of Edward Steichen – artist, commercial photographer, modern art impresario, curator, animator etc. – in order to place him (and them) within the context of early 20th century New York. The rise of mass media, the expansion of modern art practices and institutional infrastructures, the globalization of capitalism and visual culture: Steichen embraced all of these transformative social changes, and insisted on contributing to their dynamic development. Long obscured by Stieglitz’s obsession with art photography, Steichen’s multi-faceted talents and protean oeuvre can finally be seen as the trailblazing achievements that they are. In today’s postmodern social landscape, this photographer serves as a role model, and his career provides a road map for the 21st century artist intent on flourishing within our contemporary image-world.
Shelley Rice is an Arts Professor at New York University, with a joint appointment between the Photography and Imaging Department, the Art History Department and the Institute of Fine Arts. She is the author of Parisian Views, the editor of Inverted Odysseys: Claude Cahun, Maya Deren, Cindy Sherman and the co-author of numerous books and catalogs like The Book of 101 Books, Paris et le Daguerreotype, Jacques Henri Lartigue: D’air et d’Eau and, most recently, ORLAN EN CAPITALES. Her essays have appeared in many publications, for instance Art in America, Artforum, The Art Newspaper, Bookforum, Aperture, Tate Papers, French Studies and Etudes Photographiques, and she has been both the featured blogger and a radiophonic talk show hostess for lemagazine.jeudepaume.org in Paris. Rice is the recipient of numerous awards, including a Guggenheim Fellowship, two Fulbright Grants (to France and Turkey), National Endowment for the Humanities and the Arts Awards, a Hasselblad Research Fellowship and the PEN/Jerard Award for Non-Fiction Essay. In 2010 she was named a Chevalier in the Order of Arts and Letters in France, and in 2015 she was awarded the David Payne Carter Award for Teaching Excellence from the Tisch School of the Arts at NYU.