PhotoNOLA 2017 Reviewers
Bill Aguado, En Foco
Sooanne Berner, MACK
Jonathan Blaustein, The New York Times Lens Blog
Frish Brandt, Fraenkel Gallery
Joan Brookbank, Joan Brookbank Projects
Paul Buckley, Penguin Books
Martine Chaisson, Martine Chaisson Gallery
David Chickey, Radius Books
Dr. Rhea L. Combs, Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture
Roy Flukinger, Harry Ransom Center
Taj Forer, Orion Magazine
Gregory Harris, High Museum of Art
Margaret Houston, Garden & Gun Magazine
Andrew Katz, TIME
Sarah Kennel, Peabody Essex Museum
Susan Laney, Laney Contemporary
Amelia Lang, Aperture Foundation
Ingsu Liu, W. W. Norton & Company
Russell Lord, New Orleans Museum of Art
Richard McCabe, Ogden Museum of Southern Art
Bruce Myren, Photographic Resource Center (PRC)
Kathy McCarver Root, KMR Arts
Glenn Ruga, Zeke Magazine
Maarten Schilt, Schilt Publishing
Leslie-Claire Spillman, Soren Christensen Gallery
Mary Virginia Swanson, Marketing Consultant
Thea Traff, The New Yorker
Natalie Yubas, CNN Photos
see individual bios and statement of what each reviewer would like to see, below
2017 Reviewers Bios
Director, En Foco, Inc.
Bill Aguado is an arts manager and cultural activist who served as Executive Director of the Bronx Council on the Arts from 1978 and retired in 2010. He served as an arts consultant while serving on several boards of directors. Bill came out of retirement in January 2015 to serve as Director of En Foco to the present. Throughout his career he developed the reputation for serving artists of color and artists in general and in 1986 co-founded with Fred Wileon the Longwood Arts Gallery in the South Bronx. Bill believed in providing direct financial support to artists, creating the BRIO Fellowships (1985), Urban Arts Initiative (2094-6) NYC for artists of color and currently En Foco’s PhotoFellowship Initiative.
Marketing Manager, MACK
Sooanne coordinates press, marketing and creative partnerships for MACK. She works closely with artists to articulate their projects to the media and public. She organises the MACK events programme and looks after collaborations, including exhibitions. She manages all online/print marketing and social media, as well as local/international press. Alongside the MACK team, she handles book submissions and seeks out new artists for MACK to publish.
Prior to working at the publishing house, Sooanne was a copywriter for Dazed Media and worked at commercial and non-profit art galleries, including Pace London and the David Roberts Art Foundation. She has an M.A. in Art History [Global Conceptualism] from the Courtauld Institute of Art, in which she focussed on innovative formats in art publishing.
Sooanne is particularly interested to see work in the expanded field of photography such as projects that combine image and text, or image and sculpture, for example. She is interested in work conceived for, but not necessarily limited to, the book form, and projects that embrace innovative formats (print/digital). She is also interested in work that brings together archival and contemporary photography.
Jonathan Blaustein is an artist, writer, and educator based in Taos, New Mexico.
Jonathan is a regular contributor to the popular blog A Photo Editor, as well as the New York Times Lens blog, and has written about art and photography online for The New Yorker, VICE, and Hyperallergic. He has also taught photography for many years, and recently founded the Antidote Photo Retreat at his family horse farm outside Taos.
He has exhibited his work widely in galleries and museums the US, and in festivals in Europe as well. His photographs reside in collections, including the Library of Congress, the State of New Mexico, the Brooklyn Museum, and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.
Jonathan is most interested in seeing fine art and documentary photography with a fresh vision, or a sense of innovation. As a long time professor, he’s also happy to offer constructive feedback on project development.
President and Co-owner, Fraenkel Gallery
San Francisco, CA
Frish Brandt is President and co-owner of Fraenkel Gallery.
Opened in 1979, the gallery has witnessed the evolution of photography from non-art to high art. The gallery represents work from 19th, 20th and 21st century…and has fun doing so. Over the years as the photography’s acceptance grew, the gallery increasingly played with the ever-blurring lines including works by artists in other media. Exhibitions along the lines of “The Unphotographable,” “Edward Hopper & Company” and “Not Exactly Photographs” are a few examples.
In addition to the gallery, Frish serves on the board of San Francisco Art & Film for Teens, the Exploratorium arts committee, and is active at SFMOMA in a number of ways including serving on the Director’s Circle committee.
Her first job was working for Sears Home Shopping Service in catalog sales, skills which still come in useful when working with collectors from afar.
Owner/Director, Joan Brookbank Projects
Greater New York City Area
Joan Brookbank, a literary agent and book publishing advisor, is the director of Joan Brookbank Projects. She represents and advises writers and visual artists, and has recently been involved with the initiation and production of museum exhibitions. Former head of U.S. operations for international companies including the French book publishers’ consortium French Book Export Center and the art book publisher Merrell, Brookbank has extensive experience ranging from sales, marketing, and distribution to acquisitions and project development, museum and gallery co-editions, translation rights, and book and exhibition contract drafting and negotiation. Contracts on behalf of clients include agreements for published and forthcoming books and related paper products from HarperDesign, Abrams, Chronicle Books, Nation Books, Penguin Random House, Princeton Architectural Press, Hatje Cantz, Glitterati, PowerHouse, and Scholastic, among others. She is also the editor of One Woman by John Botte and Elicia Ho (Glitterati, May 2018).Brookbank is pleased to share insights into various book publishing scenarios and issues that concern photographers. Brookbank’s experience ranges from literary projects to fine art books; regarding photography specifically, Brookbank has been involved with dozens of photography books over the years, from monographs by emerging artists and established photographers to anthologies and museum catalogs, and is thus open to reviewing a wide range of work.
VP Executive Creative Director, Penguin Random House
New York, NY
Paul Buckley is VP Executive Creative Director within Penguin Random House and oversees a large staff of exceptionally talented designers and art directors working on the jackets and covers of fourteen imprints within the Penguin Random House publishing group. Over the past two decades, his iconic design and singular art direction have been showcased on thousands of covers and jackets, winning him many awards and frequent invitations to speak in the United States and abroad. In 2017, he edited and introduced Classic Penguin – Cover to Cover, and in 2010, he edited and introduced Penguin 75.
Though I love to see series work, I cannot help you get a book deal or a show. My team and I do well over 1,000 book covers a year – from Amor Towles to Zadie Smith; fiction, nonfiction, a wide array of topics. I do not work on mass market of any kind. We commission photos as well as use existing work. My worst review experience was a gentleman who spent 5 minutes in a supermarket and put a portfolio together of closeups of fruits and vegetables and tried to convince me they’d make great book covers – for 15 minutes – which can be an absolute eternity. Please don’t be that guy.
Owner/Artistic Director, Martine Chaisson Gallery
New Orleans, LA
With an emphasis on quality, Martine Chaisson Gallery represents emerging and established artists providing a variety of original contemporary art including painting, drawing, photography, and sculpture to enhance both corporate and individual environments.
Publisher/Creative Director, Radius Books
Santa Fe, NM
David Chickey is Publisher, Designer, and Editorial Director for Radius Books, a non-profit publishing company based in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Founded in 2007, Radius Books’ mission is to encourage, promote, and publish books of artistic and cultural value. Radius titles have received national recognition, including multiple awards from AIGA, American Association of Museums Publishing, and best book nominations from The New Yorker, TIME, PDN, Independent Publisher, and The Paris Photo-Aperture Foundation.
Chickey also owns a private design firm, with clients including Aperture, Abrams, Harvard University, The Lannan Foundation, SITE Santa Fe, and David Zwirner, among others.
He is the former board chair of the Center for Contemporary Art in Santa Fe, and a graduate of Sussex University, England, and UNC, Chapel Hill, where he was a Morehead Scholar.
Dr. Rhea L. Combs
Curator of Film & Photography, Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture
Rhea L. Combs is Curator of Film & Photography at the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture. She also serves as the head of the museum’s Earl W. and Amanda Stafford Center for African American Media Arts (CAAMA). Combs’ current exhibitions and projects include, Everyday Beauty: Selections from the Photography and Film Collection, and Through the African American Lens: Selections from the Permanent Collection of NMAAHC, along with the six-part photography books series, Double Exposure. Her writings have been featured in anthologies, academic journals and exhibition catalogues on a range of topics including: African American female filmmakers, black popular culture, visual aesthetics, filmmaking and photography.She has developed a program called “The Great Migration” that focuses on collecting African American home movies for the museum’s permanent collection. She’s presented talks on media, art, and culture at various museums and throughout the US.
Combs is interested in contemporary fine art photography and photojournalism, Black & White as well as color photography.
Senior Research Curator, Harry Ransom Center, The University of Texas at Austin
Roy Flukinger is the Senior Research Curator at the Harry Ransom Center at The University of Texas at Austin, where he has served as a curator since 1977. While serving as department head of photography he was responsible for the management of the collections and archives. He has taught and lectured at The University as well as at a variety of other organizations and institutions of higher learning. His most recent publications were on Arnold Newman and on the Center‚Äôs Gernsheim Collection, and he has mos recently completed co-curating a gallery-wide exhibition on their Magnum Photos collection. He consults with a variety of institutions and researchers; serves as juror, reviewer and evaluator of contemporary events, groups and support organizations; and continues to assist in research, management, conservation and development matters for the department.
He is interested in all forms of contemporary photography from black and white to color and digital, with an additional interest in modern work employing historical, alternative processes. He is most interested in seeing artistic and photojournalistic bodies of work, and less interested in purely commercial work, though he still remains pretty dang enthusiastic about all disciplines of photography.
Picture Editor, Orion Magazine
Saratoga Springs, NY
Taj Forer is Picture Editor for Orion Magazine, a digital and print publication founded on the “fundamental conviction that humans are morally responsible for the world in which we live, and that the individual comes to sense this responsibility as he or she develops a personal bond with nature.” Taj is also a publisher and digital media executive with roots in the fine art market. He is co-founder of Fabl, a visual storytelling platform, and Daylight, an art publishing/media company. He is the author of two books of his own photography, Threefold Sun, (2007, Edizioni Charta) and Stone by Stone, (2011, Kehrer). Born in New Jersey, Forer studied at Sarah Lawrence College and the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. Taj works for Orion from his home in Saratoga Springs, New York.
Orion magazine invites readers into a community of caring for the planet. Through writing and art that explore the connection between nature and culture, Orion inspires new thinking about how humanity might live on Earth justly, sustainably, and joyously.
Assistant Curator of Photography, High Museum of Art
Gregory Harris is the Assistant Curator of Photography at the High Museum of Art in Atlanta. Harris is a specialist in documentary photography and is best known for his work with emerging artists. Since joining the High in July 2016, Harris has organized the exhibitions Thomas Struth: Nature & Politics (2016) and Paul Graham: The Whiteness of the Whale (2017) and is currently working on projects with Amy Elkins and Mark Steinmetz. He was previously the Assistant Curator at the DePaul Art Museum in Chicago, where he curated several exhibitions including Sonja Thomsen: Glowing Wavelengths in Between (2015), The Sochi Project: An Atlas of War and Tourism in the Caucasus (2014), and Studio Malick: Portraits from Mali (2012). Harris is also the curator and author of the exhibition catalogues We Shall: Photographs by Paul D’Amato (2013), Matt Siber: Idol Structures (2015), and Liminal Infrastructure (2015). Harris previously held curatorial positions in the Photography Department at the Art Institute of Chicago, where he organized the exhibitions In the Vernacular (2010) and Of National Interest (2008). His essay, “Photographs Still and Unfolding,” was published by the McNay Art Museum, San Antonio in September 2016 as part of the book Telling Tales: Contemporary Narrative Photography. Harris also wrote the introduction for Black is the Day, Black is the Night (2016) by Los Angeles-based photographer Amy Elkins, which was shortlisted for the Aperture First Photobook Prize and the MACK First Book Award. In addition to his curatorial work, Harris is a founding editor of the photobook press Skylark Editions, serves on the Board of Directors for LATITUDE, a community digital lab in Chicago, and is a member of the Advisory Council of Atlanta Celebrates Photography. He earned a BFA in photography from Columbia College Chicago, and an MA in art history from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
He is interested in fine and art documentary photography, particularly projects of and about the American South as well as work that examines the intersection of photography and other media.
Associate Photo Editor, Garden & Gun
As the Associate Photo Editor at Garden & Gun Magazine—an award-winning national magazine with a focus on Southern culture—Margaret Houston is part of an art team of three that curates the look of each issue, where 99% of the photography is original. Houston started at G&G in 2011 and over the past six years has helped establish the magazine’s aesthetic. Originally from Augusta, Georgia, she earned a BFA at Roanoke College in Salem, Virginia, and the South continues to have a strong influence on her appreciation of photography. For Houston, it’s equally as exciting to send a non-Southern shooter into far off corners of the region as it is to work with a champion artist who is native to the land—everyone’s interpretation is unique. Like many editors, she got into the business by working as a photographer first. Due to that background she remains interested in the various tools, equipment, and techniques that help make each image. Within the past several years, she has also enjoyed watching photographers’ relationships with motion evolve.
Houston is interested in reviewing photography about the South AND beyond in both digital and film formats. Photojournalistic and artistic styles of photography are preferred over commercial.
Senior Multimedia Editor, TIME
New York, NY
Andrew Katz is the Senior Multimedia Editor at TIME, based in New York. In this role—a digital, print, social tribrid—he helps manage day-to-day online photo coverage; assigns, edits and produces print and online features regarding international news—frequently including conflict, migration and other humanitarian issues; contextualizes viral photography and curates the @time account on Instagram. He joined TIME in 2012 as a contract reporter, covering events like the Newtown massacre and Boston Marathon bombing. He later held roles including homepage editor and news editor before a brief stint on the Washington Post’s foreign desk. He returned to TIME in late 2015, joining the photo team as International Multimedia Editor. He is a graduate of the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and the University of Maryland, College Park.
Andrew is interested to see documentary and personal work, reportage, portraiture, in-progress or new books and multimedia projects.
Byrne Family Curator of Photography, Peabody Essex Museum
As The Byrne Family Curator of Photography at the Peabody Essex Museum, Sarah Kennel leads an ambitious, globally oriented exhibition program devoted to both historical and contemporary photography and time based media. Sarah oversees the care and growth of an extensive collection of photographs dating from 1839 to the present, with exceptional strengths in nineteenth-century East and South Asian, Maritime, and New England-area photography. She is preparing a major exhibition on the artist Sally Mann, slated to open in 2018, and planning an exhibition on nineteenth-century photography in China. Prior to joining PEM in 2015, Kennel was Associate Curator in the Department of Photographs at the National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C, where she curated numerous photography and interdisciplinary exhibitions. She earned a B.A. from Princeton University and a Ph.D. in art history at University of California, Berkeley and she occasionally teaches the history of modern art and photography.
Sarah is interested in the entire history of photography and especially fascinated with the relationship between photography and other art forms; contemporary portraiture; the relationship between science, technology and photography; photography as a form of visual knowledge, and contemporary artists working with so-called alternative processes.
Director, Laney Contemporary
Susan Laney is an independent curator and director of Laney Contemporary Fine Art with more than 20 years experience in the fine art market. Laney specializes in photography and contemporary art from both emerging and established artists with a focus on the South. Laney has curated group and solo exhibitions in galleries, colleges, and museums, such as Jack Leigh: Full Circle, Low Country Photographs, 1972-2004 at the SCAD Museum of Art in 2014. In 2016, she curated five exhibitions with Savannah College of Art and Design which included; Persona, Stephanie Howard: Time and Place and Eternity, Aint–Bad: Vision to Reality, Kevin Cooley: High Water Mark, and Pamela Wiley: Now the Once. She is currently working on an exhibition featuring the works of photographer Elaine Mayes to open in the Fall of 2018 at the SCAD Museum of Art. From 2014- 2016, she was the curator of the visual arts exhibition for the Westobou Festival with Currents (2014), Story Line: Wiley, Howard, and Moneyhun (2015), and Jowita Wyszomirska: Unseen Patterns (2016).
Her passion for working in support of the arts began with a part-time job at the Jack Leigh Gallery while attending the Savannah College of Art and Design. Laney graduated from SCAD with a BFA in photography and began her career as an exhibition designer and collections manager for SCAD’s permanent collection. In 1998, she returned to the Jack Leigh Gallery as the director, where she worked for 13 years. She has since served on the Alumni Executive Board of SCAD and co-founded the non-profit organization, ARC Savannah. She is the director of the Jack Leigh Estate. Laney’s expertise is often requested for collaboration with private and corporate clients in developing or enhancing art collections.
She is interested in fine art photography ranging from documentary work to alternative process and mixed media.
Executive Managing Editor of Book Program, Aperture Foundation
New York, NY
Amelia Lang is the executive managing editor of Aperture’s book program. She has worked on dozens of publications as both project manager and editor since joining the organization in 2011. She previously lived in San Francisco, where she worked as a curatorial assistant, archivist, and project manager on exhibitions and publications for numerous photographers and estates.
VP., Executive Art Director, W. W. Norton and Company
Born in Taiwan, Ingsu Liu moved to the United States at the age of 14. She received her BFA from Pratt Institute in 1988 and immediately began her career in Publishing with Penguin Books; she then moved onto William Morrow Books, Vintage Books/Random House, and in 1996 began working at W. W. Norton & Company where she currently holds the title of Vice President, Executive Art Director and frequently works with such authors as Neil Gaiman, Neil DeGrasse Tyson, Stephen Greenblatt, Michael Lewis, Mary Roach and Chuck Palahniuk. Ingsu works with many designers, illustrators, art curators and photographers on her imprint, and her work has been exhibited in PDN, Communication Arts, Print Magazine, the AIGA’s 50 books/50 Covers, and The New York Book Show.
Ingsu’s work can be found on the Norton website, under Norton Hardcover Jackets.
Freeman Family Curator of Photographs, New Orleans Museum of Art
New Orleans, LA
Russell Lord is the Freeman Family Curator of Photographs at the New Orleans Museum of Art (NOMA). Lord previously held positions at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Yale University Art Gallery, and has written widely on the history of photography. His recent publications include: Gordon Parks: The Making of an Argument, and Edward Burtynsky: Water. He is also currently working on a book about the permanent photography collection at NOMA, and a book about early nineteenth century American photography to be published by the University of Washington Press. Lord’s exhibitions include: Photography, Sequence, and Time; Reinventing Nature: Art from the School of Fontainebleau; and What is a Photograph? Much of his research focuses on the relationships between photography and other visual media.
Curator of Photography, Ogden Museum of Southern Art
New Orleans, LA
Richard McCabe is a curator, writer, and photographer. He was born in England and grew up in the American South. In 1998, he received an MFA in Studio Art from Florida State University. For the past nineteen years he has lived and worked in New York City and New Orleans. Since 2010, Mr. McCabe has been the Curator of Photography at the Ogden Museum of Southern Art. He has curated over twenty-five exhibitions including: Seeing Beyond the Ordinary, The Mythology of Florida, The Rising, Eudora Welty: Photographs from the 1930s – 40s, Contemporary Alabama Photography, and The Colourful South.
Richard McCabe’s thoughts and writings on photography have been published in the New York Times, N.P.R., Louisiana Cultural Vistas, Spot, The Bitter Southerner, AINT – BAD, and South x Southeast magazine. In 2016, he contributed an introduction essay for the Fall Line Press publication: Sweetheart Roller Skating Rink: Bill Yates.
Mr. McCabe is interested in reviewing photographs of and about the American South.
Acting Executive Director, Photographic Resource Center
Bruce Myren is an artist and photographer based in Cambridge, MA. He holds a BFA in photography from Massachusetts College of Art and Design and earned his MFA in studio art from the University of Connecticut, Storrs in 2009. He has taught at Amherst College, the Rhode Island School of Design, the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, and Northeastern University.
He was the Chair of the Northeast Region of the Society for Photographic Education from 2010-2016, and is on the board of directors of the Photographic Resource Center (PRC) where he is Acting Executive Director. This past summer, the PRC became a Resident Partner with Lesley University’s College of Art + Design in Cambridge, Massachusetts, after spending 41 years in Boston.
The Photographic Resource Center is a vital forum for the exploration, interpretation, and celebration of new work, ideas, and methods in photography. We inspire our members and the broader community with thought-provoking exhibits, educational programs, and resources that support the advancement of the photographic arts.
Founded in 1976, the Photographic Resource Center (PRC) is an independent 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. The PRC provides its members and the general public with thought-provoking exhibitions; distinctive education programs; wide-ranging resources; and unique special events. Emphasizing new ideas and trends in contemporary photography, the PRC hosts several exhibitions each year. Ranging from provocative theme-based exhibitions to the highly anticipated juried and student exhibitions.
Kathy McCarver Root
Owner/Director, KMR Arts
Washington Depot, CT
Kathryn McCarver Root opened KMR Arts in 2007. Appealing to both the established collector and the first time buyer, KMR Arts continues to celebrate photography. Kathy McCarver Root is a photography dealer, working with individual and corporate clients to purchase and install photography. McCarver Root gained her experience over two decades while working as a photography editor for books (Lillian Bassman, Bulfinch, Weekend Retreats, Rizzoli) and prestigious magazines (Esquire, Us Weekly, InStyle). KMR Arts marked its 5 year anniversary with a memorable show of vintage prints by the photographer, Diane Arbus, in 2012.
Kathy is interested in a wide variety or photography and is open to seeing a range of work.
Executive Editor, ZEKE Magazine
Glenn Ruga is a graphic designer, photographer, curator, editor,and a life-long human rights activist. In 2008, Glenn founded the Social Documentary Network which to date has presented more than 2,000 documentary photography exhibits from all parts of the world on its website. In February 2010, Ruga curated SDN’s first exhibition at powerHouse Arena in New York on the global recession and has continued to curate exhibitions for SDN in New York and other locations. From 2010-2013, Glenn was the Executive Director of the Photographic Resource Center (PRC) at Boston University, and in 2012 Glenn was a curator of the New York Photo Festival. In 2015, Glenn founded ZEKE: The Magazine of Global Documentary, which is now publishing its sixth issue. Glenn has a B.A. in Social Theory from the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, and a MFA in Graphic and Advertising Design from Syracuse University.
Publisher/Director, Schilt Publishing & Gallery
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Schilt Publishing and Schilt Gallery are respectively a publishing house specialized in high quality photography books, and a commercial gallery representing a wide range of artists from all over the world.
The aim of both companies is to offer a worldwide platform for its artists as well as being a family of artists in the old-fashioned way. They not only publish books and market those through offices in the U.S.A., the U.K. and The Netherlands, but also actively working together with the artists to help them with their careers. Schilt searches for exhibition possibilities in different countries both in public and commercial galleries.
Schilt Publishing is a publisher of high profile journalistic, documentary and art photography books. Schilt Publishing is also the long-term publishing partner of World Press Photo. Photographers published by Schilt Publishing include: Emmy Andriesse, Pavel Bañka, David Batchelder, Frederick Baldwin, Jonas Bendiksen, Jodi Bieber, Marcus Bleasdale, Giancarlo Ceraudo, David Chancellor, Sergey Chilikov, Lotte Fløe Christensen, Kirk Crippens, Sara Davidmann, Dornith Doherty, Linda Dorigo, Thomas Dworzak, Rena Effendi, Lauren Fleishman, Anna Fox, Gretchen LeMaistre, Leonard Freed, Mario Giacomelli, Stanley Greene, Maris Gruzdeva, Vadim Gushchin, Cig Harvey, Jane Hilton, Michel Huneault, Joshua Lutz, Diana Matar, Yola Monakhov Stockton, Igor Moukhin, Ilvy Njiokiktjien, Martin Parr, Paolo Pellegrin, Elena Perlino, Lorena Ros, Elliot Ross, Peter Suchitzky, Edward Thompson, Wendy Watriss and Donald Weber.
In 2013 Schilt Gallery was founded. This fine art gallery was a logical next step and provides an even broader basis in the international photography world. Schilt Gallery organizes, approximately four times per year, a solo exhibition of one of its artists at its home base in Amsterdam. In Spring 2017 the publishing house and the gallery were merged into one company: Schilt Publishing & Gallery.
Maarten Schilt is a portfolio reviewer at esteemed photo festivals all over the world. He is also a member of the International Advisory Council to the Executive Director of Center for Photography in Santa Fe. He speaks fluent Dutch, English and German and has adequate knowledge of French and Italian.
Photographers should look at Schilt’s history of publications and exhibitions to determine the types of work they are interested in.
Director, Soren Christensen Gallery
New Orleans, LA
Leslie-Claire Spillman began working at Søren Christensen Gallery as an art student studying at Xavier University. Now the Director, she’s enjoyed 15 years of representing a large and diverse roster of over 30 artists, ranging from seasoned to emerging talent working in all media. Although originally a painter, she’s worked as a professional photographer in addition to the gallery for over a decade, and is always drawn to photographic work that features the form. Having sought out new photographers to show at the gallery in conjunction with PhotoNOLA, and curated those exhibitions for the last 8 years of the event, she enjoys the discovery of new work that moves her, and the opportunity to share that work with her clients and visitors to the gallery. She is most interested in portraiture, street photography, and socially or politically conscious imagery.
Mary Virginia Swanson
Creative Consultant, MVSwanson & Associates
Tucson, AZ & NYC
Mary Virginia Swanson is an author, educator and advisor to artists and arts organizations whose career includes exhibiting, collecting and licensing photography. In 2013, Swanson received the Focus Award for Lifetime Achievement in Photography from the Griffin Museum in Boston and the recipient of the 2014 Susan Carr Prize for Education given by ASMP. Her publications, articles, and blog on marketing opportunities for photographers are invaluable resources for photographers that can be found at www.mvswanson.com.
Ms. Swanson is happy to advise participating artists on what markets are most likely to respond positively to their imagery. In addition to viewing examples of final prints, she encourages those who meet with her to bring samples of marketing materials they are currently using to promote themselves, and/or mock-ups of catalogues / monographs in the planning stages. Sharing your website during your session will allow her to advise on its effectiveness in presenting your work to desired collectors, collecting institutions, and others.
Associate Photo Editor, The New Yorker
New York, NY
Thea Traff is a photo editor at The New Yorker magazine, where she commissions shoots and does photo research for the print edition. She also pitches stories and produces new content for the magazine’s photo blog, Photo Booth. Outside of her time at the magazine, she enjoys attending photo reviews and festivals, and working with authors and New York-based publishers on photo research for nonfiction books. Prior to joining The New Yorker in 2013, she studied photography and philosophy at Colgate University in upstate New York.
Thea wishes to see work that could be applied in an editorial context, everything from documentary to fine art.
Photo Editor, CNN
New York, NY
Natalie Yubas is a photo editor with CNN Photos. Since 2013 she has helped oversee daily digital galleries as well as long-form projects and assignments, including the CNN Photo Blog. In 2015 Natalie was involved in CNN’s production of “Picture This: New Orleans,” in which Mary Ellen Mark was assigned to photograph the city for the 10-year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.
She is most interested in reviewing photojournalistic work and personal projects.