Camera Club outing at the residence of Frank Q. Story, Alhambra, California, Wikimedia Commons.
I started curating because I was interested in exploring ideas about art in general - to show the range of what artists were doing and how they were interpreting different themes. My first attempts at curating exhibitions were in grad school and utilized skills I'd developed in the previous decade organizing commercial photoshoots. It seemed like such a natural thing to do - find something you feel is interesting, shine a light on it and have a voice in the dialogue while you bring different ideas into the mix.
I also come by this mindset very naturally and must celebrate both my mother, Dolores Mitchell and my father, Albert Mitchell, for providing me with great examples of the personal and political responsibilities we have, not only to our own communities, but to the world at large. In the 1960s they ran a coffeehouse on LA’s Sunset Strip called The Fifth Estate (music, art, film and politics) as well as two underground newspapers, the Los Angeles Underground and L.A. Metro. Now in her 90s, my mother continues to teach art history and publish a monthly newsletter, Art Talk, while still making sure she paints every day.
The seven artists in this showcase have expanded the dialogue in photography by creating space for others to develop their own voice. Whether through education, curation, publishing or organizing, they’ve helped change our photographic landscape. I wanted to shine a light on their own work, because all of that community building can take time away from one’s artistic practice, no matter how satisfying it is. Join me in celebrating the magic of their voices.