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Lehigh University Art Galleries offers New Vision

Lehigh University Art Galleries (LUAG) is participating in a unique coordinated exhibition in partnership with the Allentown Art Museum and Lafayette College.

The three institutions are presenting New Visions: Black and White Photography in Contemporary Art, which draws from one of the region’s major collections of late modern photography. The Lehigh exhibit can be viewed in the Zoellner Arts Center Main Gallery through Nov. 1.

The collection, formed by Arthur and Anne Goldstein, includes more than 100 black and white works and contains many of the most important names in contemporary photography, including, Diane Arbus, Richard Avedon, Lee Friedlander, Cindy Sherman and Andy Warhol.

“Photography has become a major force in defining creative and conceptual questions of our age, through the selection of subject matter, technical manipulation and interplay with other media,” says Ricardo Viera, LUAG director and curator of the exhibition. “The images present issues of how we process visual information, how ordinary occurrences differ and how facts are manipulated to construct history as art.”

Each institution’s collection showcases a theme representing a major topic in contemporary photography. Lehigh presents images from “Identity: An individual’s comprehension of themselves.” The theme of the Allentown Art Museum collection is “Imagination: our ability to form mental images or concepts,” while Lafayette College takes the theme, “Memory: our ability to reconstruct past experiences.”

“The collection specializes in black and white photography, suggesting comparisons with the medium’s earliest roots and emphasizing that these recent images are removed from ordinary reality by the absence of color,” Viera says.

As part of the exhibition, Lehigh will host a gallery talk on Oct. 22. Stephen Perloff, editor-in-chief of The Photo Review Newsletter, will speak at 4:30 p.m. at the Zoellner Arts Center gallery.

The exhibition has been organized by the Jane Voorhees Zimmerli Art Museum and Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, with venue exhibitions organized by the Allentown Art Museum.

Story by Tricia Long

Posted on Wednesday, September 16, 2009

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