Color Pictures Catalogue

Color Pictures

The catalogue "Color Pictures" documents an exhibition of photography examining color as a subject matter in works by John Baldessari, Sarah Charlesworth, William Eggleston, Russell Lee, Thomas Ruff, Stephen Shore, Allison V. Smith, and Ann Stautberg. The exhibition charts the merger of art and photography in the '70s to the present. During this period, both the photo-world and the art-world were transformed by the conflict of photography's high technical and aesthetic standards and the intentionally amateur and nonchalant approach to the camera by conceptually oriented artists who used the camera to document their often ephemeral materials and elusive ideas. Their rocky fusion led not only to the acceptance of the photographic medium as a legitimate tool for art making but an unparalleled growth in the number of artists using the camera in the 1980s and '90s.

The exhibition "Color Pictures" arose from a spring 2011 graduate art history seminar on photography at Texas Christian University. The seminar, Photography In/As/Not as Art, explored the nexus of visual art and photography in the 1970s and provided the framework for the exhibition at Fort Worth Contemporary Arts and the catalogue. Individual artist entries were written by graduate students in the seminar and an introduction is provided by Frances Colpitt, organizer of the exhibition.

A specialist in American art since 1960, Frances Colpitt holds the Deedie Potter Rose Chair, an endowed professorship in contemporary art history, at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth. She is a corresponding editor for Art in America and the author of Minimal Art: The Critical Perspective and Abstract Art in the Late Twentieth Century.