Performing the Border at the Alper Initiative for Washington Arts/American University Museum opening June 17

The Invisible Wall: Photographs from East of the Anacostia River

Introducing Dimitri Reeves, Good Hope Road SE, Washington, DC © Susana Raab from the series, The Invisible Wall

A very exciting political event is coming to fruition in Washington right now.  I know what you all are thinking, so I will do away with the suspense and just confirm that yes, the exciting political event of the summer in Washington is happening at the American University Art Museum June 17. I am of course, talking about Performing the Border curated by Megan Rook-Koepsel at the Alper Initiative for Washington Arts.

For those of you who live in the DMV and don’t know – the Alper Initiative for Washington Arts is promotes an understanding and appreciation of the art and artists of the Washington Metropolitan Area through a dedicated space located within the American University Museum, and exhibitions, programs, and resources for the study and encouragement of DC’s creative community.  They also host a reading room related to each exhibition.

Perhaps most exciting is that early inspirator Carl de Keyzer will be showing in the main gallery and giving an artist talk at 5 pm before the opening, this is a real opportunity, folks.  De Keyzer’s work was a huge personal influence back in me formative years – his way of looking at the world without relying on the same set of tropes I saw repeatedly foregrounded.  Also the fat rectangular format. And flash. No illusion of sentimentality or false intimacy.  He won a Smith? grant and travelled around the US in a van or something with his family photographing God, Inc. and continues to produce fantastic work – his recent work from Cuba for ex. Also because his pictures are so small on his website and also because, website, the opportunity to see the prints in person should not be discounted.

So come to see this work, here his talk, and see this fabulous group show I’m in with a bunch of other interesting DC artists: Clay Dunklin, Amy Lin, Jenny Wu, and Street Light Circus. The works in Performing the Border explore the concept of borders and boundaries, both the ways we perform within them, and the way those borders are often themselves a performance. Looking forward to seeing you there.


Saturday June 17, 2017

Alper Initiative for Washington Arts/American University Museum at the Katzen

4400 Massachusetts Avenue NW

Free parking in the garage










Raab Photobombing Fotoweek Closing Panel: Finding Your Vision & Staying Inspired

So they asked me if I wanted to be on the Festival Closing Conversation panel on “Finding your vision and staying inspired,” to which I wanted to respond, “Hells if I know!”

But actually, of course I have a ton to say on the subject, and even better for the audience, I am surrounded by a competent, inspiring co-panel including moderator Lucian Perkins, and fellow panelists Frank Hallam Day, Marvin Joseph, Bill Crandall, and especially, Astrid Riecken.  This Closing Conversation will take place at Fotoweek Central, 2801 16th Street NorthwestWashington, DC, 20009 on Sunday November 15 from 3:30-5:00 pm. Afterwards we can share a cab to get down to the National Museum of Women in the Arts supper with Carrie Mae Weems to thusly ponder if an artist can inspire social change. Inspiration, vision, social change, victuals. What more could anyone ask for of a November Sunday?

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The Invisible Wall opens at Georgetown University Thursday Oct. 29 & Other Fotoweek Previews

Hello.  I’ve got a few openings around town around FotoweekDC, beginning with the lead off: The Invisible Wall @ Georgetown University’s Spagnuolo Gallery

 Thursday Oct. 29 at 5 -7.  If you can make it I will be speaking from 5-6.


Next up: the exhibit I curated for Fotoweek “My Kingdom for a Stage: Staged Photography in Conceptual and Documentary Practices” through the work of 17 Iberoamerican photographers.

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© Adriana Duque “Maria 25”

The public opening will be Friday Nov. 6 at Hillyer Art Space tucked away in a back alley near the Cosmos Club in Dupont Circle, 9 Hillyer Ct NW, Washington, DC 20008.  Finding the artists featured in this show was both fun and frustrating, and greatly aided with the help of Fabian Goncalves Borrega at the Art Museum of the Americas and Idurre Alonso at the Getty.  Un mil gracias.  The artists who agreed to participate in this show represent a wealth of practices.

Conceptually, the work often follows the tradition of magical realism in recreating fantasy worlds meant to inform our current realities as in Mexican artists Dulce Pinzon’s “Global Warming,” or in “Maria 2.” In the latter image, Colombian artist Adriana Duque recreates a world of childhood fantasy where a young Infanta sojourns resplendent and bejeweled, a modern interpretation of a baroque Colonial fantasy.

Documentary photography is considered to be the sacred terrain of the unaltered photograph, but it can employ elements of staged photography to powerful effect. Looking inwards, Ecuadorean photographer Paola Paredes, set a stage composed of three cameras recording the moment when she told her parents she was gay. The photographic series records pain, pathos, and humor.

© Pao Paredes from the series "The Unveiling"

© Pao Paredes from the series “The Unveiling”

I am very excited to feature the works of:

Argentina/Irina Werning

Brazil/Mostra Tua Capa

Chile/Rodrigo Valenzuela

Colombia/Adriana Duque

Costa Rica/Eloy Mora

Ecuador/Paola Paredes

El Salvador/Fred Ramos

Espana/Garcia de Marina

Guatemala/Mario Santizo

Honduras/Hector Rene

Mexico/Dulce Pinzon

Paraguay/Norberto Duarte

Peru/Rafael Soldi

Portugal/Miguel Proença

Uruguay/Roberto Fernandez

Republica Dominicana/Fausto Ortiz

Venezuela/ Francisco Elías Prada

Next up WPOW’s annual juried show at Fotoweek Central at the Former Spanish Ambassador’s Residence opens with a reception on Tues Nov 10th @ 8pm with a $5 donation to fotoweek suggested at the door.  Yours truly won best in show, with the image from The Invisible Wall below.Prior to the opening WPOW is hosting  “Picturing Diversity: Expanding the View,” a panel discussion during FotoWeekDC on coverage of minorities and culture in photojournalism. The panelists include photographers Zun Lee and Endia Beal, and will be moderated by Washington Post Director of Photography MaryAnne Golon.

The panel will be immediately followed by opening exhibition
reception for WPOW’s Annual Juried Exhibition at 8PM which is free and open to the public. Please consider a $5 donation to our sponsorFotoWeekDC at the reception.

Picturing Diversity: Expanding the View
When: Nov. 10, 2015 at 6:30 PM (doors open at 6PM)
WPOW Juried Show Opening Reception
When: Nov. 10, 2015 at 8-10 PM
Where: FotoWeek Central 1750 16th St NW, Washington, DC 20009.
Cost for entry to the panel is $10, which defrays the cost of the program.

Featured photographers:
Aude Guerrucci; Allison Shelley; Becky Harlan; Caroline Lacey; Ellie Van Houtte; Erin Scott Photography; Gabriela Bulisova; Gabriella Demczuk; Jacquelyn Martin; Kristin Adair; Kate Warren; Lindsey Léger; Leigh Vogel; Lexey Swall; Lauren Schneiderman; Maria Daniel Balcazar; Stephanie Cordle Frankel; Sarah Miller; Susana Raab; Melissa Golden; Meghan Dhaliwal

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Print is Not Dead: American Idle in the Pacific Standard



“I also wanted to let you know that I’ve had to look at thousands (millions?) of images in my current job, and yours really stand out. Provocative and beautiful subjects and compositions, and such a range of natural, expressive poses. The body language, the look on the faces–people lost in their own moment, good, bad, neutral. You must be really charming and disarming.”

-salient words by editor Michael Fitzgerald of the Pacific Standard

With these words ended a most brief but beautiful collaboration between myself and editor Michael Fitzgerald of the Pacific Standard.  The magazine, based in Santa Barbara, hosts a fabulous photo column in the spirit of the Harper’s Magazine Index.  Each issue, it pairs an unassigned photograph with a bunch of factoids of loosely or tightly ascribed to the information in the photograph.  Fun and interesting, right?

Por ejemplo:

  • In 1964, Col Harlan Sanders, then age 74, reluctantly sold his stake in KFC for $2 million to his attorney, John Brown Jr. The Colonel started appearing on popular TV programs, including I’ve Got a Secret and The Tonight Show, clad in his trademark white suit, sometimes pushing a chicken cage filled with $2 million in cash.
  • Researchers at Stanford University interviewed athletes and coaches and concluded that boxing’s physical intimacy produces a sense of “at-homeness” among fighters. One of the most salient effects of boxing, according to fighters, is the closeness that develops between boxers in the ring.

So glad that print is not dead. How would we read in the bathtub?

Internship opportunities available at The Contemporary in Baltimore, MD: Go For It!

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Shite. I just got this announcement or I would have posted sooner.  Totally unacceptable to have 24 hours to do an ap. HOWEVER that said, Deanna Haggag, the Director of The Contemporary in Baltimore has been attracting notice. And it is not your usual museum. It does not collect work so there’s that and is more experiential is my feeling though I have not attended any of the programming so can’t speak to experience.

But what can I say is interning in a museum is a great way to acquaint yourself to the wonderful world of the arts and cultural heritage and I highly recommend it.  You’d be in Baltimore and they don’t call it Charm City for naught.

Good luck.

Online application here.


 The internship provides an opportunity for individuals to learn about the operation of a nomadic, non-collecting museum focused on site-specific and subject-oriented projects in Baltimore. Interns will work closely with our small staff to carry out projects and facilitate our Speaker Series that brings internationally-recognized artists, critics, and art professionals to Baltimore. Interns are responsible for producing an issue of our annual intern publication, Scroll. The Contemporary offers each intern a stipend. Additionally, academic credit may be arranged with the intern’s college/university– student status, however, is not a prerequisite for consideration.

Job Opening in Andover, MA with Northeast Document Conservation Center

Sometimes I think there is no more noble calling than saving precious artifacts for future generations.  The person who fills this role will I assume be taking over this role. Here’s the 411:

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Position Summary The Northeast Document Conservation Center (NEDCC) is hiring a full-time Photographer to join the Imaging Services department.

Founded in 1973, NEDCC is a not-for-profit conservation and preservation services center, supporting the collections of its private and institutional clients through book, paper, and photograph conservation, digital reformatting, and preservation assistance. The successful candidate will be joining a team of experienced and productive photographers, and will benefit from working alongside conservators and specialists dedicated to the treatment and care of the range of objects the Imaging Services department digitizes.

The Photographer will be charged principally with the digital reformatting of the extensive, diverse and unique collections held by NEDCC’s institutional and private clients. These include virtually all photographic media, particularly nitrate, acetate, and glass-plate negatives, X-ray film, and daguerreotypes; bound and loose manuscript material; rare books and illuminated manuscripts; and oversized items such as maps and blueprints. To this end, the Imaging Services department utilizes medium format and SLR digital camera systems; copystands; custom stations for imaging oversized, transmissive, and bound materials; Broncolor strobes; a GE X-ray film scanner; Epson wide format printers; Eizo displays; and a color managed workflow. While we are primarily Mac-based we also use PCs, and maintain our own network, server, and archive.

Responsibilities Reporting to the Director of Imaging Services, the Photographer will:  As needed, establish ideal environmental conditions for digitally photographing a project’s specific material types.  Digitally capture archival and special collection materials.  Apply standard post-capture image adjustments such as rotation and cropping, neutralizing color, and inverting and enhancing negatives.  On a project-by-project basis, perform complex post-capture image adjustments and processing, including file stitching and digital restoration.  Print high-quality reproductions of digitally captured files.  Always strive for process and image quality improvements within individual projects.  Collaborate with colleagues to identify the most efficient workflows for digitizing materials safely, while also maintaining the highest standards of quality.  Track project status and submit daily production reports.  Adhere to NEDCC hours of service without exception.  Other duties as assigned.

Qualifications  Bachelor’s degree in a related discipline.  Experience or training in the handling of rare and fragile paper-based materials.  1-3 years’ experience digitally reformatting archival and special collection materials or works of art.  Proficiency in the use of imaging hardware, particularly digital medium format and SLR camera systems, and flatbed or film scanners.  Knowledge of studio lighting equipment and techniques.  Experience using RAW workflow software such as Lightroom or CaptureOne, and editing software such as Photoshop.  Strong eye for color, value, composition, and visual accuracy.  Demonstrated ability to work under deadlines in a production-oriented environment.  Ability to work both independently and collaboratively.  Exceptional problem solving skills.  Meticulous attention to detail.  Enthusiasm and creativity.

Application Process To apply please send a PDF file containing cover letter, resume, and contact information for three references to Terrance D’Ambrosio, Director of Imaging Services, at

Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture seeking contractor for object digitization services

NMAAHC “may” be hiring a contractor. Here is what I know:

The National Museum of African American History and Culture may be hiring a contractor to manage object handling, rehousing and digital imaging services. The contractor would be responsible for the following:

  • Digital scanning and photography
  • Using flatbed and overhead scanners and digital cameras to create digital images of collections and other materials
  • Working in Microsoft Word; Microsoft Excel; a museum collection information system, The Museum System (TMS); Adobe Photoshop and Bridge; and other image processing and editing software
  • Handling a wide variety of museum collection objects in compliance with best museum practices, including moving collection objects, unframing, unmatting, reframing, rematting, rehousing, and creating custom housing for museum collection objects
  • Assisting other digital imaging specialists with scanning and photography of collection objects, set ups for scanning and photography, and object handling
  • Processing and editing digital images
  • Embedding metadata into digital images and other digital assets for the SI Digital Asset Management System (DAMS), TMS, and Enterprise Digital Asset Network (EDAN)
  • Creating, modifying, or updating records in DAMS and TMS.
  • Assisting with management of digital assets
  • Working closely with the Museum’s collection management, curatorial, and digitization staff, contractors, volunteers, and interns on the Museum’s digitization initiatives

If interested in the contracting position, please send résumés to We are gathering a pool of applicants and will be in touch with those whose résumés indicate they are the best fit for the position.

Thank you for your time and interest,

Carrie Feldman

Museum Specialist

Office of Curatorial Affairs

Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture

I Love Gifts in the Mail: Thank You Michael Wilson and Jayme Stone “The Yo-Yo Ma of Banjo”


It was a great pleasure to host Cincinnatti’s finest Michael Wilson at Casa Teddy Roosevelt last winter (so happy to call it LAST winter now!).  He was in town working with Colorado-based banjoist, compositionist and instigator Jayme Stone who was creating an album of Allen Lomax collected tunes and Michael was photographing objects from the Lomax collection at the Library of Congress.


The album. Who doesn’t love a beloved analog object immortalized on film! Working in a museum has really increased my appreciation for the artifact.


If you like this kind of music which I do, very much so, you can download the album and liner notes digitally on Bandcamp and iTunes or order the CD from Borealis Records. The recording features 20 songs, 15 musicians, and a deluxe 60-page booklet with archival photos and detailed song notes. Have a look at Jayme’s upcoming tour dates and get your tickets for a show nearby. This is still very much a grassroots effort and your support of this music and your help speading the word makes a tangible and much appreciated difference.

“An essential album.” — FOLK ROOTS
“A transatlantic session with blood, guts, and grit.” — THE HERALD
“A truly inventive spin on some very old tunes.” — GEORGIA STRAIGHT


Thanks Jayme and Michael! It was a real treat to receive your mails.

Loves and Fears on BBC: Sitting Sat 2/14 12-3pm @Anacostia Arts Center

Did I mention I’m doing another Loves and Fears portrait sitting on Saturday Feb 14 1231 Good Hope Road SE from 12 -3?  Well I am, and I would love it if you’d show up ready to bare your soul and lend me your visage for a rollicking good time on a cold winter day.

The BBC recently featured the project in this video available here.


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Loves & Fears Shoot Sat Feb. 14 SE DC @ Anacostia Arts Center

Loves & Fears was on cam-er-rah @ BBC World News America Toinight on PBS a couple of nights ago and we are doing another shoot in Anacostia next Saturday Feb: 14 from 12-4, so please come and share the love and truth:

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