• /the-shot-blog/aaron-huey-i-walk-be-great-unkown

    Photographer Aaron Huey's life simply screams adventure. He has shot for such for places all over the world for such high-profile publications as  National Geographic, the Smithsonian Magazine, Harper's Bazaar, The New Yorker, and The New York Times.

    Aaron began his IRIS Nights lecture reflecting on the theme of the current exhibition at the Space: "Extreme Exposure." He defines "extreme" as "furthest," "remotest," and "inaccessible."

    We all go for walks, but nothing compares to how Aaron goes about doing it - he really goes for a walk! He spent a good portion of his lecture on his series of photographs that focused on his trek across America in 2002. He and his dog, Cosmo, spent 154 days covering 3,349 miles from California to New York, walking every step of the way. That's sure to put some good wear and tear on your sneakers!

    Aaron explained that this walk was not a photo project but "a meditation." It was a way for him to help clear his thoughts. He walks "to be in the great unknown."

    Like most of us, Aaron has a million things going through his mind at once and he wanted to purge these overwhelming thoughts. He provided a humorous (yet not too far-fetched!) visual of what his thought process looks like.

    Like the "thought" slide above proves, humor is a big part of Aaron's personality and was also a big part of his lecture. He had the audience in stitches throughout!

    In attendance that night was journalist and friend of the photographer, Alex Chadwick.

    While traveling across America, Aaron revealed that, due to the generosity of the people he encountered, he only spent $250 dollars of his own money during his entire trip across America. He took people up on their charitable offers to feed him and put him up in their homes for the night. What did he get offered the most? Beer, bibles as well as other leisurely diversions.

    Aaron also talked about the time he has spent documenting the people of the Pine Ridge reservation in South Dakota. It's a place he cares deeply about and he travels there several times a year.

    Here's Aaron with the Annenberg Foundation's Charles Weingarten, who stopped by to say hello after the lecture. We're sure the two swapped quite a few stories about their own travels around the world!

    You did such a great job at IRIS Nights, Aaron and best of luck on your next adventure! If you go for another long walk, remember to invest in a good pair of sneakers!

    Click here to watch Aaron's IRIS Nights lecture online. For more information about Aaron visit his official Website.

    (All images by Unique for the Space)

  • /the-shot-blog/omeara-brings-volcanoes-life


    Stephen James O'Meara, one of our Extreme Exposure featured photographers, was the first IRIS Nights lecturer in our new series. O'Meara and his wife Donna (who graced us with her presence at our opening night) have lived on a volcano for the past 30 years. You read right - they not only take pictures of volcanoes erupting around the globe, they LIVE atop an active one.

    Stephen's lecture was called "Does the Moon Affect Volcanoes on Earth?" - which if you attended you now know is not such a wild subject. Stephen is an animated speaker who is incredibly inspired by his studies. He also happens to be an astronomer, so no one could be better prepared to answer this question. Stephen explained how the Moon affects tidal flows of water, but also of the Earth crust itself.

    He went into great detail about how the tides of the Earth's crust rise and fall at regular interval, but when the Earth is closest to the Moon (perigee) those tides are more rapid and when the Earth is farthest from the Moon (apogee) the tides of the crust grow more slow.

    The best part was how he demonstrated this change by condensing the daily and monthly tidal intervals by breathing in and out. It was an incredibly simplified demonstration but it made very clear what the effect Moon has on tides (both water and crust) and therefore on the probability of volcanic eruptions.

    Steve seemed like he was about to erupt a few times!

    It was a great pleasure listening to such an informed and inspiring individual. I can't believe we've never had a Vulcanologist/Astronomer lecture here before!

  • /the-shot-blog/extreme-exposure-our-newest-exhibition-opens-space


    Young and old came to celebrate the opening of "Extreme Exposure," the sixth at the Space!

    This collection of images focuses on five photographers who journey to the most dangerous places on Earth to capture photographs that will simply blow you away.

    Photographer Clyde Butcher was in attendance and so was one half of husband and wife volcanologist/photographer team Donna and Stephen O'Meara. Stephen O'Meara was unable to join the festivities because he was at home (on top of the Kilauea volcano in Hawaii!) caring for the couple's dog, Daisy Duke (yup - that's probably the only time you will read 'home', 'volcano', 'dog', and 'Daisy Duke' in a single sentence!)

    Here the two pose with Wallis Annenberg.

    And here's guest curatorial adviser Cristina Mittermeier proudly showing off one of Paul Nicklen's stunning photos.

    Annenberg Foundation Executive Director Leonard Aube took to the podium to help launch the "Extreme Exposure" IRIS Nights lecture series and also introduce...

    ...Clyde and Donna to the audience! Donna had a chance to say a few words to the large group of revelers...

    ...then Clyde followed with his unique Florida charm!

    What's your most extreme experience? Visitors shared their own by writing on this white board at the Space. This little one is very young yet still had something to contribute!

    Actress China Chow and MOCA Director Jeffrey Deitch took in the great photography on our 7' x 14' hi-definition screen.
    (photo by Stefanie Keenan for the Space)

    Donna, ever so friendly, hangs out with staff members from the Space!

    Here are some of the Annenberg folks who were responsible for making the launch party such a great success!


    (photo by Stefanie Keenan for the Space)

    Come to the Photo Space to witness the great lengths some will go to so to capture stunning photographs. There's no risk to you - our photographers have already taken care of the danger part for you!

    And don't forget to check out the IRIS Nights lecture series related to Extreme Exposure. Click here for the schedule.

    (All images by Unique for the Space except where noted)

  • /the-shot-blog/recent-developments-greg-gorman

    Another one of our L8S ANG3LES exhibit artists is in our viewfinder again - Greg Gorman has an exhibit up called "A Distinct Vision" 1970-2010. (click on "Greg Gorman Exhibit" on the left for more info)

    As some of you may recall, Greg was one of the 8 featured photographers in our inaugural exhibit and gave a memorable IRIS Nights lecture. This new retrospective show featured several rooms filled with prints


    from arrays of tabloid-size portraits


    to super-sized prints that dominated huge swaths of the wall.

    including a nearly life-sized series of Gorman's favorite subject,


    Tony Ward

    The exhibit had a gala opening at the Pacific Design Center on Sept. 15th with a very well-attended party featuring some of his famous subjects, an array of


    stylish friends...


    fans... and - of course -


    Mr. Gorman himself!


    Other faces in the crowd included Julius Shulman collaborator Juergen Nogai and his better half Jeannie.

    The show only runs through Oct. 29, 2010, so you still have a chance to get out before 5 p.m. on Friday if you want to see it.

    Scroll down for some more images from the opening.
    My favorites were giant contact sheets.


    Warhol


    Johnson


    Iman

    What an incredible peek behind Gorman's iconic images. It's actually amazing when you see that he seems incapable of taking a bad shot!

    Here are a few more portraits:


    Bowie and Jackson


    Herman, Beatty and Depp


    Crisp

    Don't miss it!

    (All event photos © David Scharff for the Annenberg Foundation)

    Blog Tags: Photographers
  • /the-shot-blog/extreme-exposure-erupts-space

    You may have seen a video making the rounds this month of "extreme adventurer" Drew Bristol getting closer to a live volcano than most of us would ever want to get. The jaw-dropping footage was taken from inside the Marum volcano on Ambrym Island in the South Pacific this past summer.

    We have our own "volcano hunters," showing their work in the Extreme Exposure exhibition at the Photo Space, a new group exhibit featuring spectacular images from five unique talents in photography who work on the edge of wildlife, climate and environment.

    Husband and wife team Donna & Stephen O'Meara have been photographing volcanoes all over the world for the last 25 years. They also enjoy getting as close to volcanoes as they possibly can, but they take it a step further - they live on top of Kilauea, a live volcano in Hawaii!

    Come see photos by the The O'Mearas as well as photographers Clyde Butcher, Michael Nichols and Paul Nicklen up close and personal at Extreme Exposure, opening Saturday, October 23rd at the Space and running through April 17, 2011.

    Don't miss it!

  • /the-shot-blog/larry-towell-story-people-front-you

    Larry Towell's life is all about human beings and being human (his business card even says "human being") so it should come as no surprise that he incorporated those themes into last night's IRIS Nights lecture.

    The first thing Larry did during the opening of his lecture last was explain why he would not be doing much speaking during his presentation. The reason? The hiccups. Larry explained that he suffered with the hiccups for 2 weeks earlier this summer and decided to put together a photographic slideshow, complete with pre-recorded audio, just in case there was a sudden resurgence of his hiccups while he was up on stage.

    Some of the multi-talented photojournalist's slideshows consisted of his poetry and guitar-playing which narrated the photos with forceful artistry.

    Larry said that he sometimes collects the ambient sound of places uses that as a soundtrack to his slideshow.

    You can hear this natural soundtrack in his series dedicated to the Mennonites.

    The Magnum photographer has photographed people all over the globe and spent a chunk of his time talking about his photo series from Palestine. Larry reminded us that "a story is the people in front of you."

    Larry, who studied visual arts in college, pointed out: "When you're studying art you're made to believe that you're the center of the universe. But when you actually go out into the universe, you realize that it revolves around you ...and the people that are in front of you become the story." In other words, it really is all about human beings!

    Larry's most personal slideshow came at the end of his talk when he showed a series of photographs that focused on the most important people in his life: his wife and children. The beautiful black and white images show the family frolicking in nature as well around their quaint country home.

    During the Q&A Larry revealed how he goes about establishing a relationship with his subjects: it takes time. For example, the project with the Mennonites, who rarely allow themselves to be photographed, took him 10 years and 3000 roles of film to complete!

    Congratulations, Larry, on a great presentation - and no hiccups!

    (All images by Unique for the Space)

  • /the-shot-blog/la-times-hearts-space


    Last month, The Los Angeles Times launched Framework, a top-notch photo blog we've fallen in love with. Not only are we big fans of the site but they're also big fans of the Space! They had nothing but nice things to say about the Space and our IRIS Nights lecture series: "The lectures are informative and entertaining and the space is spectacular — it simply engages you. In an odd way, I feel like I'm in an amazing home with the most incredible entertainment system and equally incredible photography in the hallways."

    Thanks for the kind words and great blog! We're hooked!

  • /the-shot-blog/renee-byer-photographers-journey

    Last night, Renee Byer took the stage at our IRIS Nights to discuss photos that ranged in topics from the economy to prostitution to serious illness. Renee had a refreshingly down-to-earth personality and a strong desire to enlighten as many people as possible about these subjects... subjects which she clearly feels very strongly about.

    The first series of photos she presented focused on the difficulties faced by those affected by unemployment in California.

    Included in this collection is a photo (above) of California Governor Arnold Schwazenegger, who found himself stuck in the middle of the state's job crisis. Renee has photographed him several times and found him to be someone who really wanted to make a difference in the state. She described how she loves this picture primarily due to the tension seen in his hands.

    Renee shifted her talk to people in Ghana who, though they had jobs, were forced to work in a toxic environment at an e-waste recycling facility. She told us how she became fascinated with one girl there who suffered from malaria. The girl, no doubt sensing Renee's warmth and compassion, wanted to come back home with her.

    One of the most heart-breaking moments of the night came when Renee discussed a series of photos devoted to a brothel in Bangladesh that employed young girls, many of whom had no other choice but to enter the oldest profession. Renee confessed that if she won the lottery tomorrow, she would return to the South Asian country and free all of them. After listening to her speak, there's no doubt in our minds that she would!

    Renee explained that the visual presentation for her Pulitzer Prize-winning series "A Mother's Journey" typically runs an hour but she managed to squeeze in an abbreviated version for IRIS Nights. The edit didn't reduce the impact of the powerful images of a mother and her 11-year-old son as the two coped with his fight with terminal cancer.

    Renee was obviously very moved by her year-long, intimate documentation of Cyndie and Derek. Cyndie told Renee that she can't imagine living without the above photograph that captured a very tender moment between her and her son.

    She also showed a sweet picture where the two shared a rare smiling moment together which seemed to touch everyone in the audience.

    During the Q & A, Renee was asked the requisite question about when she first sound herself interested in photography. Apparently, it all started when Renee, as child, shot "little teeny people" on the street from the top of the Statue of Liberty, with a brownie camera her parents had given her.

    Through her wonderful photography, this warm, cheerful and talented woman now gets to tell stories about all kinds of people (not just the "teeny" ones) from around the world. Sounds to us like she's already won the lottery!

    Click here to watch Renee's lecture online!

    (All images by Unique for the Space)

  • /the-shot-blog/recent-developments-douglas-kirkland

    "Recent Developments" is a new regular feature on the blog that will keep you up to speed on what's going on with photographers who have exhibited or lectured at the Space in the past. It will be a place where you can find out where work by these photographers is currently being exhibited and what new adventures they have embarked upon since we last saw them. We hope you enjoy reading these updates about our friends as much as we enjoy passing them along!

    The first photographer in our "Recent Developments" update is Douglas Kirkland, who was featured in the Space's very first exhibition, L8S ANG3LES, a show that that included such iconic photos of his as the one of Marilyn Monroe above.

    He was also our very FIRST IRIS Nights guest lecturer!

    The famed photographer is having his first major retrospective in Australia, titled "Douglas Kirkland: A Life in Pictures," right now! All of our Aussie readers should rush over to Brisbane's Gallery of Modern Art to check out.

    Aside from Monroe, photos by Douglas of Audrey Hepburn, Elizabeth Taylor, Judy Garland, Stevie Wonder, Jack Nicholson, Andy Warhol, Gabrielle 'Coco' Chanel and many others are included in the collection. Also, in what sounds like an astonishing addition, is a large set of photos taken on the set of Michael Jackson's "Thriller" music video. The exhibit closes on October 24.

    You can listen to an informative interview with Douglas conducted by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation about the exhibit here.

    Here's Douglas at the opening of our Space standing between our fearless leader, Wallis Annenberg, and L8S ANG3LES photographer Greg Gorman, along with other exhibiting photographers like (clockwise) Carolyn Cole, guest curator Anne Wilkes Tucker, Julius Shulman, Kirk McKoy, our Foundation co-director Gregory Annenberg Weingarten and Tim Street-Porter.

    Keep checking back on the blog for more "Recent Developments!"

  • /the-shot-blog/francine-orr-listening-comes-first

    This is what Francine Orr revealed early on in her IRIS Nights talk: "photojournalism is my passion." The LA Times photographer showed just how much she cares about the people she photographs by giving an awfully touching and moving lecture.

    The first series of photographs in Francine's presentation focused on her documentation of people in Africa who live on just pennies a day. She told the audience that she had a hard time talking to people suffering from poverty but spoke to them anyway due to a strong urge to tell their stories.

    Francine spent a bit of time talking about one photo in particular, that of a wide-eyed African woman named Margaret who was dying of HIV.

    She described the moment she convinced Margaret's children to allow her to photograph their mother. She told them that the haunting image would tell the world her story and in turn this would help others.

    Francine uttered several fervent soundbites during the lecture. One of our favorites was "Poverty sucks!"

    Orr has spent a large amount of her career ensconced in dangerous places all over the world. She recounted one story about a time when she was in Africa and suspected her "fixer," the man she hired to protect/translate for her, planned to rob her of her expensive camera equipment.

    She remembered how she'd been told by others in her field to go with her instincts. One morning, she wisely ditched him and went out on her own for the rest of her trip.

    Francine also went into detail about how she befriended several homeless people she documented who live under the 7th Street Bridge in LA.

    During the presentation of her final slideshow, Francine held a brave 7-month old baby boy who is the subject of a story to be published in an upcoming edition of the LA Times - a truly touching moment. That night he became the youngest person to go up on our IRIS Nights stage!

    When asked by an audience member if she records interviews with her subjects before she starts photographing them, or shoots them first and then interviews them, Orr responded that's it's neither. For her, the listening comes first. When dealing with a story, she says, "the number one thing I try to do is listen." Quite a statement for a photographer.

    Her two years working for the Peace Corps, on the island of Yap in Micronesia, was where she said she really learned to listen. She taught in a school there with no electricity, no outside communication except for visiting documentary film crews and anthropologists. Gathering around oil lanterns at night the Yapese people would share stories with her and each other...with not a single distraction. One of her former students from Yap - now living in the US - recently found her on Facebook and came to the lecture with a sister in tow!

    Thanks, Francine, for sharing such moving and inspiring stories. We hope to hear more of them in the future!

    For more information about Francine visit her upcoming official Website.

    We at the Space are very excited to bring you videos of IRIS Nights lectures in a more timely manner. Click here to watch Francine's lecture online!

    (All images by Unique for the Space)

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