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Art July, 7 2010

Preview | “Debating Modern Photography” at the Portland Museum of Art

Opening this fall, Debating Modern Photography: The Triumph of Group f/64 celebrates the advances made by a group of California photographers.

In the 1930s, a small group of California photographers challenged the painterly, soft-focus Pictorialist style of the day. They argued that photography could only advance as an art if its practitioners exploited characteristics inherent to the camera’s mechanical nature. This small association of innovators created Group f/64, named after the camera aperture which produces great depth of field and sharp focus. Debating Modern Photography: The Triumph of Group f/64, on view September 30 through December 5, 2010, at the Portland Museum of Art, revisits this debate and includes images by photographers in Group f/64 such as Ansel Adams, Edward Weston, Imogen Cunningham, Sonya Noskowiak, and Willard Van Dyke, as well as images by Pictorialists such as Anne Brigman, William Dassonville, Johan Hagemeyer, William Mortensen, and Karl Struss. With more than 100 works by 16 artists, Debating Modern Photography is the first exhibition to provide a substantial consideration of the group since 1992, and is unique in its inclusion of pictorialist examples to illustrate the debate.

September 30 through December 5, 2010 at the Portland Museum of Art.

Preview of Debating Modern Photography continues after the jump.

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