About Me

The Basics

Florida native (yes we exist). I spent most of my life living in Tampa before moving to St. Petersburg in 2012.

I work out of my home. I have a sweet little office full of shelves to hold thousands and thousands of photos, both mine and my clients’, and some of my favorite vintage photos hanging on the wall.

On any given day you’ll find me scanning photos, rehousing prints into a safe environment, teaching university students or museum members the History of Photography, or working on my independent curatorial project Picurious.

Education

My Master of Arts in Art History was awarded by University of South Florida in 2010 where I specialized in the history of photography. In my thesis, entitled “Empty Streets in the Capital of Modernity: Formation of lieux de mémoire in Parisian street photography from Daguerre to Atget,” I propose interpretations of and reasons for photographs showing vacant Parisian streets, even after technological advancement allowed for representation of the city’s vibrant life. I relate this aesthetic choice by photographers to the desires of their intended audience, and contrast that audience with the modernists and surrealists who were so enchanted by these impossible street views.

I was awarded an Outstanding Thesis and Dissertation Award for 2009–10 for my research. I was also awarded a curatorial internship in the Photography Department at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. for my expertise in this subject matter. Selected from a national pool of M.A. and Ph.D. students after a rigorous and competitive three-stage application process, I assisted in the research and organization for an exhibition on the 19th-century French photographer entitled Charles Marville: Photographer of Paris.

While at USF, I also received the Provost’s Award for Outstanding Teaching by a Graduate Teaching Assistant for 2009–10. I also served as the Director of Operations of the Centre Gallery, curating numerous exhibitions by USF students and alumni in 2009–10.

Research & Publications

A portion of my thesis was reworked and published in the journal Future Anterior in 2013. The article is titled “Imag(in)ing Paris for Posterity.”

My current research interests surround vernacular photography, specifically the proliferation of slide (transparency) film as a recorder of family memories. In the near future, I plan to research in the archives of the Eastman Museum to further this project.

Curating

I have developed an ongoing curatorial project called Picurious inspired by photographs (specifically slides) that have been separated from their families. Found photographs offer opportunities for new contexts and interpretations. Fine art prints are available for sale, consignment, and exhibition.

Click any of the four images below to visit Picurious’ Instagram to see more.

My most recent exhibition was for the St. Petersburg Shuffleboard Club, during the 2017 Florida Trust for Historic Preservation’s Annual Conference. Read about “The Changing Face of Shuffleboard” here.

At the Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg, I curated or co-curated seven exhibitions between 2011 and 2015.

Curator

This exhibition explores contradictions between idealistic images and life in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR).  Photography was a key tool to promote party goals both internally and abroad, but did not always reflect reality. The photographs in Picturing a New Society describe virtues for a society that often existed only within pictures.

Press

“St. Pete’s Museum of Fine Arts goes Communist” 

Museum of Fine Arts, Saint Petersburg premieres important gifts of Soviet photography in exhibition”

“Picturing a New Society”

 

At once a seemingly untouched virgin land and a territory of limitless opportunity for development, the American landscape has always fueled the imagination of artists. As rapid industrialization began to threaten some of America’s most striking wilderness areas, President Theodore Roosevelt (1858–1919) and naturalist John Muir (1838–1914) led the urgent call to protect the land on a national scale. Photography was not only an aid to the cause of conservation but also a way to popularize the newly formed tourist sites, aligning nature with American values.

Read more in the blog post: Natural Beauty, National Asset

Press

“National Parks Photo Exhibit at the Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg”

“Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg spotlights the beauty of our national parks”

This exhibition of photographs by Ernest “Red” Hallen (1875–1947) commemorates the Panama Canal’s Centennial and focuses on the dramatic changes to the area during its construction. Hallen was born in Georgia and was 32 when he began his life’s work in Panama. In 1907, Hallen was appointed the official photographer by the Isthmian Canal Commission (ICC), the American administration body overseeing the Canal. He produced more than 16,000 images during his 30-year career. The ICC wanted a systematic documentation of the work in Panama, however Hallen’s images are more than mere documents. Until his retirement in 1937, Hallen’s views were the primary means by which Americans and the world experienced the great engineering feat.

Press

“Panama Canal photos at MFA, St. Petersburg document amazing accomplishment”

“Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg commemorates the centennial of the Panama Canal”

St. Petersburg exhibit shows feat of building Panama Canal”

“Photos tell story of Panama Canal”

 

In 1900, sociologist and civil rights activist W.E.B. Du Bois created an exhibition of photographs entitled “The American Negro” for that year’s World’s Fair in Paris. He selected images that showed a refined, educated, and prosperous population of African Americans, thereby confirming and projecting to a wider world the image of this reality of African American achievement and aspiration. The photographs in this exhibition, African American Life and Family, brings that story into the mid 20th century. Dating from the 1880s to the 1960s, many of the works of art are private portraits that would have been proudly displayed in the home, celebrating this rich visual history in the domestic realm of family life. Snapshots, postcards, portraits, and other typically private photographs became “galleries” of and for black Americans, individually and collectively.

Read more in the blog post Black Americans in Paris

Press

“A Day in the (past) life — African American Life and Family”

‘African American Life and Family’ set to open at the Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg”

 

Co-Curator

This noteworthy exhibition presents photographs of Egypt created during the nineteenth century, a period of great archaeological exploration and worldwide fascination with the rediscovered ancient culture. 

Press

“‘Forever in a Moment: Nineteenth-Century Photographs of Egypt’ at Museum of Fine Arts an enlightening exhibition”

“Forever in a Moment: 19th Century Photographs of Egypt at the Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg, Florida”

 

  • Sitter and Subject in Nineteenth-Century Photography

In conjunction with the 23rd Daguerreian Society Annual Symposium to be held in St. Petersburg October 27-30, 2011, this exhibition features some 60 nineteenth-century daguerreotypes, ambrotypes, and tintypes. It addresses several facets of the public’s insatiable appetite for portraits of loved ones and strangers alike. 

Press

“Sitter and Subject in Nineteenth-Century Photography” 

 

This exhibition explores how nineteenth and twentieth-century photographers responded to cities and towns, presented and preserved their history, and influenced their perception by the public. Photographing the City was developed by USF graduate students in a fall seminar taught by visiting Kennedy  scholar Katherine Bussard, Associate Curator of Photography at the Art Institute of Chicago. 

Press

“A Study of the City: Photo show at Museum of Fine Arts is urban celebration”

“Exhibition reveals fascinating images from the stellar collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg”

 

Creative

My artistic practice begins with a photograph, the quintessential memory-maker of our age. The transformation of an ordinary snapshot into a fragmented tactile object through cross-stitch comments on the influence that personal photographs exert on one’s memories. Bits and pieces of personal experiences are retained as memories, yet it is ultimately impossible to know what events are genuinely remembered and which are constructed through interaction with and mediation by photographs.

Though the source image was recorded in an exposure that lasted fractions of a second, the needlepoint took months to complete. The association of a snapshot with a long production period is counter-intuitive. By definition a snapshot is created without much forethought – the photographer reacts to her surroundings to capture a fleeting moment. New memories are formed as the image I select no longer makes me recall what I was thinking in the seconds when the photograph was recorded; instead I associate the image with the months during which I was constructing the needlepoint.

The memory of the moment of exposure may fade quickly, however, through the intricate needlepoint process, the “memory” of the image is stretched and distended over months as the image is assembled stitch-by-stitch.

Teaching

I currently teach History of Photography at University of South Florida. On this site you’ll find some teaching resources and musings under the tag Pedagogy.

I also teach photo organizing workshops in person and via an online course.

I’m currently developing an online-only History of Photography course that will be appropriate for University-level learners.

photoxo

I’ve been working in the photo industry for nearly two decades, though my unwavering interest in photography has lasted for more than thirty years. From hours in the darkroom learning analog printing processes, to learning digital photo editing, I am skilled in the production of photographs. At graduate school then working in world-renown museums I learned to care for irreplaceable photographs, curated exhibitions, and made the history of photography come alive. With photoxo I help my clients preserve their photos to help them achieve the peace of mind that their photo memories and family stories will be safe, backed up, and able to be enjoyed by future family members.

photoxo has two ancillary sites—academy.photoxo.net which is where I offer online instruction to help you manage your family photo collection, and photoxo.gallery, private and secure online photo storage for my personal archiving clients.

The future

I’m actively seeking funding for my Ph.D.

What I can do for you?

Something else? Let’s chat.