Photographs by Brooklyn artist Joni Sternbach will be displayed

Aurora, New York - The Wells College Visual Arts Department presents “SurfLand,” an exhibition of tintype and digital photographs by Brooklyn artist Joni Sternbach. The show, which focuses primarily on contemporary surfer culture, will be on display in the String Room Gallery in Main Building from March 4 through April 2. Admission is free and the public is cordially invited to view the gallery. A reception to be held on Wednesday, March 11 from 6:00-8:00 pm offers an opportunity to meet the artist; light refreshments will be served.
“SurfLand” will feature photographs by Sternbach and a video piece co-created by Bruce Milne. All of the works in this show have surfers as the subject and were shot using a 19th century method known as the wet-plate process. The resulting image is a one-of-a-kind photograph (tintype), as there is no negative; there are ten tintype works in the exhibition. The other ten show images are archival pigment prints (digital prints) modified from wet plate photographs. This combination creates a tension between new and old media that offers a striking contrast to modern methods of digital and electronic photography.

Photographer Joni Sternbach has received numerous awards and recognition for her work, including 2007’s Hardcover Monograph from Critical Mass; fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts and its predecessor, Creative Artist Public Service; and residencies with the Center for Land Use Interpretation in Wendover, Utah and with Light Work at Syracuse University. Her work can be found in the collections of the National Museum of American History at the Smithsonian, Houston’s Museum of Fine Arts, the Saint Louis Art Museum, the Cleveland Museum of Art, New York’s International Center of Photography, and Paris's Bibliothèque nationale.
This exhibition was organized by the artist and Wells’ Assistant Professor of Art History and String Room Gallery Director William Ganis. “It’s great to have these compelling images of summer beaches here to uplift us during mud season,” said Ganis. “The artist photographs people from our day using a revitalized medium— this results in a striking ambiguity whereby the subjects seem to be both contemporary and from Victorian times.” Ganis expands on these ideas in an essay that accompanies the show.
The String Room Gallery is located in Main Building. Hours are Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p. m., Thursday evenings from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. For more information about the show at Wells, please contact String Room director William Ganis at 315/364-3465 and visit the Gallery’s webpage.

Wells College ~ the Education of an Extraordinary Life

February 19, 2009

NEWS CONTACT: Kelly Buck Tehan, Director of Publications & Media Relations, 315/364-3260



March 4 - April 2, 2009