Photography conference at COM to link art and empathy

Posted on: September 25, 2013

 Krista Steinke will discuss her work, including this photo from her series "Purgatory Road," during the Society for Photographic Education South Central Regional Conference.

Look at the world through a new lens at the Society for Photographic Education South Central Regional Conference co-hosted by College of the Mainland and Houston Center for Photography. Gallery tours in Houston and Galveston, photography demonstrations and exhibitions at COM and Galveston College will fill the action-packed weekend Oct. 17-20.
Taking the theme “Refining Humanity: Photography and Empathy,” the conference will address how lens-based artists capture the human experience. Speakers will discuss whether empathy is at the heart of photography. A collaboration of educators, photographers and students, this conference will also explore how current developments affect photography in the classroom and in the darkroom.
The conference will kick off Thursday, Oct. 17, at the Houston Center for Photography with portfolio reviews for attendees. Participants will then take a bus tour of FotoFest, the Catherine Couturier Gallery and the Menil Collection before returning for a reception at the Houston Center for Photography.
The conference will continue at COM on Friday, Oct. 18, with a demonstration on how to create “anthotypes,” prints using photosensitive materials from plants, and panel discussions and presentations by graduate students and Society for Photographic Education members. The conference exhibition will open in the COM Art Gallery that evening. Keynote speaker, University of Houston professor Tracy Xavia Karner, will discuss employing visual technologies to study society and self.
The conference will travel to the island on Saturday with a tour of the Galveston Arts Center, The Strand and the conference exhibition on display at the Galveston College Art Gallery that afternoon. It will conclude Oct. 20 with a visit to the Print Room at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.
Conference tickets are $45 for students and $95 for nonstudents. Discounts will be given to Society for Photographic Education South Central Regional Conference members. For more information or to register, call 409-933-8424 or visit
The Society for Photographic Education is a nonprofit membership organization that provides and fosters an understanding of photography as a means of diverse creative expression, cultural insight, and experimental practice. Through its interdisciplinary programs, services and publications, the society seeks to promote a broader understanding of the medium in all its forms through teaching and learning, scholarship and criticism.
Houston Center for Photography’s mission is to increase society's understanding and appreciation of photography and its evolving role in contemporary culture. HCP strives to encourage artists, build audiences, stimulate dialogue and promote inquiry about photography and related media through education, exhibitions, publications, fellowship programs and community collaboration. HCP is a nonprofit organization serving as a resource to its members and the community with programs that have regional and national impact.

This image by Houston photographer Jeremy Underwood exemplifies his artistic, organic approach to photography. He will give an artist talk about his work during the Society for Photographic Education South Central Regional Conference.

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