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Saturday, November 18, 2000 - 14:00

China under Lois Conner's Eyes

Lois Conner, Photographer

CourtYard Gallery

Lois Conner, a great American photographer, will spend a few days in Beijing and accepted an invitation to present to BIS members, at the Courtyard Gallery, a few slides from her latest book China (Callaway, New York). Lois Conner, who was trained at Pratt Institute and Yale University, is presently teaching at Yale. She has participated in numerous solo and group exhibitions, from New York to Palo Alto, from Lausanne to Malmö, from Hong Kong to Beijing. China has been a central object of interest to her. She will present slides on landscapes, cities, architecture, and people, photos that span her nearly twenty years of work in China.

In Jonathan Spence's words for the preface he wrote for her latest work: “The stark contrasts of certain images, not surprisingly, are the ones we first fasten onto in her work; the comforting swoop of curved roofs versus the fierce angularity of skyscrapers; the tattered clothes of villagers versus the newly imagined chic of urban shoppers; the distant hills and the tangles of industrial wiring; the classical calligraphic line of lotus plants and the scratched graffiti on a school house wall. But very soon, having absorbed these, we are free to move beyond them. We realize that these stunningly precise and yet unpredictable prints are guiding us into the idea of space, space on its own terms, and people – old and young – in relation to that space.”

Lois Connor's photographs, in black and white, have the grain and beauty of ancient photos. No wonder; she uses antique “banquet cameras” and platinum-palladium printing process.