Thursday, February 18, 2010

Todd Hido Visits RIT

Last Thursday, RIT's School of Photographic Arts and Sciences (SPAS) had the great pleasure of welcoming photographer Todd Hido for a portfolio review and lecture.

Each student participating in the review had about 12-15 minutes to discuss their work. I showed my thesis work-in-progress at the review and received some great feedback! Here are my work prints, laid out on the table, before Mr. Hido's arrival:

Before reviews began, Todd was kind enough to show us the book dummy for his upcoming book A Road Divided.

My fellow classmate, Lisa Adamucci shows her work:

Thursday evening, Todd presented his work, as part of the Charles Arnold Lecture series:

A fantastic pairing: Mr. Hido's images grace the covers of the new editions of Raymond Carver's collections of stories such as Cathedral and Will You Please Be Quiet, Please?

I'll never forget my first introduction to Todd Hido's work as a junior at George Mason University, in my professor's PowerPoint presentation about contemporary photographers. I immediately fell in love with the nighttime portraits of houses, which influenced the creation of my Abandoned Houses series. It was delightful, to say the least, to meet the man behind the photographs!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Elizabeth Henderson Visits RIT

Rochester's "local legend" Elizabeth Henderson, author of Sharing the Harvest: A Guide to Community Supported Agriculture and co-founder of the Genesee Valley Organic CSA (GVOCSA), visited RIT's Anthropology Global Econ class last Wednesday. Professor Kray was kind enough to invite me to sit in on the class. (See my previous post with information and photos from the GVOCSA's Peacework Farm.) Elizabeth presented a slideshow of images from Peacework Farm, provided students with an historical context to community supported agriculture, and discussed the logistics of starting and maintaining an organic farm. In response to a question about cost comparison between a retail grocer's produce and a year-long CSA membership, Elizabeth stated, "if you cook yourself, you'll spend less money. If you eat better, you'll be saving money on health problems later in life." As is shown in the photo above, Elizabeth highly recommended Shannon Hayes' book Radical Homemakers: Reclaiming Domesticity from a Consumer Culture. This was my first introduction to the book, so I look forward to checking it out.

Rochester locals can sign up for GVOCSA membership at an upcoming meeting on Saturday, March 6, from 2-4 PM, at the James P. B. Duffy School 12, 999 South Avenue, in Rochester. See the website for additional information.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Sandra Steingraber Speaks at Ithaca College

Last night, I attended ecologist, author, and cancer survivor Sandra Steingraber's lecture at Ithaca College, where she teaches in the Department of Environmental Studies and Science.
Her titles include The Spoils of Famine: Ethiopian Famine Policy and Peasant Agriculture, Post-Diagnosis, Living Downstream: An Ecologist Looks at Cancer and the Environment, Having Faith: An Ecologist’s Journey to Motherhood, and The Falling Age of Puberty in U.S. Girls: what we know, what we need to know. She's a current contributor to Orion Magazine and a future contributor to the Huffington Post.

Aside from a movie trailer, a visual presentation did not accompany her talk, but proved unnecessary, as Steingraber is not only incredibly knowledgeable in her field, but a captivating speaker and poet. Titled The Importance of Journalism and Independent Media in an Age of Ecological Crisis, last night's talk was broken up into three discussion topics: endocrine disruption, the need for chemical reform, and gas drilling in the Marcellus Shale. Mixed in was autobiographical information and poetry.

In regards to endocrine disruption, Steingraber voiced a need for media representation to take responsibility off consumers and onto the government. Take for example the article from Oprah Magazine, entitled Problems with Plastic, which advises readers to "limit your exposure [to BPA] by not putting hot food or drinks in plastic containers." News reports commonly inform consumers to avoid specific products rather than pressuring the government to ban the use of such chemicals in manufacturing in the first place. Steingraber stated that it is impossible, even for an expert like herself, to avoid all products with toxic contents. For additional information about endocrine disruption, read Our Stolen Future.

The evening ended with a presentation of the movie trailer for Living Downstream, a documentary based on Steingraber's book bearing the same title.
A still from Living Downstream:

Ithaca College will present a screening of Living Downstream on April 3, 2010. Stay tuned for details.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

This Week in Upstate NY

Here are a few events happening this week in Upstate NY:

Biologist And Author Sandra Steingraber To Speak At Ithaca College

“The Importance of Journalism and Independent Media in an Age of Ecological Crisis”

Tues., Feb. 9, 2010
Time: 7:30 PM
Location: Park Hall Auditorium, Ithaca College
: Free

Additional information available here.

RRCDC's Reshaping Rochester Lecture Series Presents: Christopher Leinberger

"The New American Dream"

Date: Wed., Feb. 10, 2010
Time: 7-9 PM
Location: Jewish Community Center
1200 Edgewood Ave., Rochester, NY
Cost: $15/advance; $20/door

Additional information and ticket purchase available here.

UPDATE: Leinberger lecture has been canceled
For future Reshaping Rochester Lectures, click here.

RIT Charles Arnold Lecture Series Presents: Todd Hido

Date: Thurs., Feb. 11, 2010
Time: 7:00 PM
Location: RIT Carlson Auditorium, Bldg. 76 room 1125
Cost: Free

Additional information available here.