Brian Sholis: The Romance of Impossible Photographs

work by Brian Sholis

Brian Sholis is curator of photography at the Cincinnati Art Museum. He has worked as a curator, writer, and editor both independently and at organizations including Artforum and the Aperture Foundation. His writing on photography and contemporary art has appeared in numerous exhibition catalogs and in Artforum, Frieze, Aperture, and Art in America, and other periodicals. Sholis received his B.A. from Boston University and a M.A. in American history from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York.


From its earliest days, photographers have tried using the medium to depict the impossible. During the 19th century, scientists and others used photography to document the moon, the stars, the sun, and other phenomena their technologies were not quite able to capture. A century later, many Conceptual artists used lens-based technologies to record an inner landscape of emotion and private experience inaccessible to mechanical reproduction. This talk, drawn from in-progress research, links the two groups through the notion of wonder.


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