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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Alumna returns for photo lecture

A 1959 UA alumna returns to campus to give a lecture on her photography.

“”I have had work shown at the center before and they actually own a couple of my original pieces,”” said Barbara Kasten,

the artist.

Cass Fey, Curator of Education at Center for Creative Photography, selected Kasten as the artist to be featured in a lecture version of the exhibition.

“”The Center for Creative Photography is an important international research center and museum,”” she said. “”Artists like to visit, come to look at the work here and to be a part of the program … and Kasten is a widely known artist in the world photography, so we wanted her to come to the program.””

Kasten received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in 1959 from the UA.

“”She studied painting and sculpture through the UA, so she’s alumna. I invited her for this and many more reasons, and she accepted,”” Fey said.

Jovan Erfan, the media relations manager at Center for Creative Photography, said the event should appeal to all types of people, no matter what level of photographic knowledge they have.

“”For someone who sees photography as something that generally includes landscape type of sceneries, this will be something totally different,”” Erfan said. “”It is abstract art, so it isn’t a type that people normally see.””

Of her abstract artwork, Kasten said, “”It shows that there are alternatives to the traditional method of using photography to show the world at large. It’s not representational; it’s a different approach.””

The art exhibit is going on now and will run until Nov. 28. Work by Bill Armstrong and Wynn Bullock will also be on display until that date.

The show features a group of artists whose work relates to abstraction, according to Erfan. “”The show itself was put together by Aperture gallery in New York City, then was brought to the UA by programming,”” Erfan said.

“”In (Kasten’s) lecture program she will play photographs within the context of her larger body of work, so you will get to see work from her entire career, whereas at the exhibit there’s just her one piece,”” Fey said.

The image in the exhibition is called “”Studio Construct,”” and is a single photograph.

“”I’ve always enjoyed the way she creates forms in order to photograph them. Often when you think of abstraction, you think of abstracting something that exists already, but she works backwards from that … she creates something, which she then photographs, and thus creates really interesting sculptural forms,”” Fey said. “”She creates geometric shapes using mirrors, glass and very careful lighting. And the image that’s in the exhibition is just a beautiful range of tones and shapes.””

Kasten earned her Master’s degree from the California College of Arts and Crafts, in Oakland, Calif., and now teaches photography at Columbia College Chicago. She has had her photography represented internationally and in well-known places such as the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. She also taught photography at the UA for one semester while it was looking for a permanent instructor.

A former Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority member while at the UA, Kasten said she still has family connections in Arizona, “”So it’s very close to home. I’m really excited to come back.””

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