It’s hard for our generation to imagine controversy over color photography. In a day and age when many art schools have shut down their traditional black-and-white darkrooms in favor of going digital, color is simply taken for granted.
Audiences had been accustomed to color in film since the 1930s and television since the 1950s.
Color photography, however, was reserved mostly for commercial advertising, family portraits and snapshots until the 1970s. The Cincinnati Art Museum’s Starburst: Color Photography in America 1970–1980 explores that groundbreaking decade, when landmark exhibitions by several artists changed the face of art photography forever.
The show then launches chronologically into a series of sections devoted to individual photographers. Several galleries recreate the spirit of the original 1970s shows with either vintage or more recent prints. Through more than 200 photographs by 18 artists, the exhibition presents a 10-year surge of experimentation with color, the effects of which we’re still feeling today.
Tuesday-Sunday. Through May 9. Get show details and read Tamera Lenz Muente's review here.