The Shpilman Institute for Photography Announces First Research Grant Winners

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The Shpilman Institute for Photography (The SIP) is pleased to announce the recipients of its inaugural Grants Program for research in philosophy and photography and for general research that advances understanding of photography’s practices, theories, and history.

The Shpilman Institue of Photography grant winners in photography research

Grant Winners - The SIP

The overwhelming response of theorists, writers and researchers, reinforced the notion that there is a need in further developing theoretical research and photography’s practices.

The Shpilman Institute for Photography announced the recipients and grant amounts for its inaugural Grants Program for research in philosophy and photography. The response by applicants for calls for papers in general photography research and research in philosophy and photography concluded in March, with an esteemed panel choosing 15 grant winners. Each successful winner secured a grant between $5,000 and $15,000.

Shalom Shpilman, founder of the Shpilman Institute for Photography, said: “The overwhelming response of theorists, writers and researchers, reinforced the notion that there is a need in further developing theoretical research and photography’s practices.” He added, “I now eagerly look forward to the outstanding outcomes of the current grant winners’ research.”

With nearly 500 applications by scholars and researchers in 47 countries around the world, grants have been awarded to:

Philosophy and Photography Research:

Paula Amad, Associate Professor, Department of Cinema and Comparative Literature, University of Iowa. “The Earth’s ‘Lost Archives’: Rethinking Memory Through Aerial Photography,” $15,000.

Ignaz Cassar, Ph.D., School of Fine Art, History of Art and Cultural Studies, University of Leeds, post-doctoral student and visual artist. “The Imaginary of the Darkroom: Interiority and the Aesthetics of the Secret,” $5,000.

Diarmuid Costello, Associate Professor, Department of Philosophy, University of Warwick in Great Britain and Chair of the British Society of Aesthetics. “On Photography,” $15,000.

Noam Gal, doctoral candidate, Department of Comparative Literature, Yale University, M.A. Hebrew University, Cultural Studies Program. “Photography and the Human Animal/Divide: The Case of the Second World War,” $10,000.

Nicholas Mirzoeff, Professor, Department of Media, Culture and Communication, New York University. “The Photographic Common and Authoritarian Realism: A Genealogy of the 2011 Revolutions,” $5,000.

Toni Ross, Senior Lecturer, School of Art History and Art Education, University of New South Wales, Paddington, Australia. “Suspending the Realism/Anti-realism Dichotomy: Jacques Rancière’s Aesthetic Theory and Thomas Demand’s practice of Photography,” $10,000.

General Photography Research:

Kathryn Jane Brown, Assistant Professor, Department of Art History, University of Tilburg, The Netherlands. “Photography, Poetry, and Sculpture: 'La Mort et les statues' by Pierre Jahan and Jean Cocteau,” $5,000.

Kate Elizabeth Creasey, Fellow, Department of History, Istanbul Bilgi University, Turkey. “A Sultan’s Albums, A Nation’s Past: The Photographic Albums of Sultan Abdülhamid II and the Re-imagination of Ottoman History in Contemporary Turkey,” $5,000.

Congyao Han, Professor, School of Journalism and Communication, Nanjing University, China; Yongming Zhu, Associate Professor, Department of Communication Science and Technology, Suzhou University of Science and Technology, China; Fen Ji, writer and photographer, Nanjing, China; and Hui Guo, independent scholar, Nanjing, China. “Unbound Vision: Early Chinese Ideas on Photography,” $10,000.

Steven Hoelscher, Professor, Departments of American Studies and Geography, and Academic Curator of Photography, The Harry Ransom Center, University of Texas, Austin, USA, and Susan Meiselas, photographer, New York, USA, and Professor, Masters of Photographic Studies, Leiden, The Netherlands. “The Magnum Collection: A Visual Archive of the Modern World,” $5,000.

Amos Morris-Reich, Senior Lecturer, Department of Jewish History, University of Haifa, Israel. “Photography and ‘Jewish Difference’: An Epistemic History of Racial Photography as Scientific Evidence in the German Context,” $5,000.

Krzysztof Pijarski, doctoral candidate, Institute of Art History, University of Warsaw, Poland. “’JL” - The Performativity of the Archive, or, Rethinking the Body and the Archive,” $5,000.

Nathaniel M. Stein, doctoral candidate, Department of History of Art and Architecture, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island, USA. “Authorities of Presence: Robert Gill, Survey Photography, and the Colonial Sublime,” $5,000.

Helmut Voelter, independent scholar, Leipzig, Germany. “Masanao Abe’s Cloud Photographs,” $10,000.

Jeffrey Yoo Warren, Shannon Dosemagen, Mathew Lippincott, The Public Laboratory for Open Technology & Science, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA. “Activist Uses of Emergent Hacker Technologies for Environmental Justice: Investigating Communities of Practice,” $10,000.

The grants, awarded for one year’s research and the writing of an essay or an extended research paper, will culminate in a presentation of talks and panels at The SIP Global Photography Conference to be held in summer 2012 and the publication of The SIP Annual, coinciding with the conference.

This year’s Grants Panel in philosophy and photography included:
Louis Kaplan (panel chair), Professor of History and Theory of Photography and New Media, Graduate Department of Art, University of Toronto, Canada. Eduardo Cadava, Professor of English, Princeton University, New Jersey, USA. Margaret Iversen, Professor, Department of Art History, University of Essex, UK. Hagi Ke’naan, Senior Lecturer, Department of Philosophy, Tel Aviv University, Israel. John Tagg, Professor of Art History and Comparative Literature, Binghamton University, Binghamton, New York, USA. Hilde Van Gelder, Associate Professor of Contemporary Art History, Katholieke Universitaet Leuven, Belgium.

For general research, the Grants Panel included: Steven Henry Madoff (panel chair), Senior Critic, Yale University School of Art, New Haven, Connecticut, USA. George Baker, Associate Professor, Department of Art History, University of California, Los Angeles, USA. Ute Eskildsen, Chair, Department of Photography and Associate Director, Museum Folkwang, Essen, Germany. Marta Gili, Director, the Jeu de Paume, Paris, France. Douglas Nickel, the Andrea V. Rosenthal Professor of Modern Art, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island, USA. David A. Ross, Chair, MFA in Art Practice, the School of Visual Arts, New York, New York, USA. Urs Stahel, Director and Curator, Fotomuseum Winterthur, Switzerland.

Romi Mikulinsky Managing Director of The SIP, said: “With such an illustrious panel, the bar was certainly set high from the outset in what should be considered grant-worthy, and the applicants did not disappoint. With the calls reaching across the globe, a truly international selection of top minds in their fields were selected to receive the first SIP calls for research grants.”

About The SIP
The Shpilman Institute for Photography (The SIP), founded by scholar and philanthropist Shalom Shpilman in 2010, is a research institute that initiates research, opens debate, and supports creative work in the field of photography. Through its grant programs, The SIP commissions and sponsors individual and group research projects, with an emphasis on philosophical concerns, including scholarly papers and publications in print and online, conferences, symposia, and other events. Our mission is to advance understanding of the world of photography and to understand the world through photography, both within and beyond traditional social and cultural boundaries.

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Romi Mikulinsky
The Shpilman Institue for Photography
(972) 542-1801 x20
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