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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Famous gallery owner to pay tribute to UA prof.

    Famed photo gallery owner and UA graduate Peter MacGill will return to campus today to pay tribute to his friend and mentor Harold Jones, an art professor at the UA for the last 20 years.

    MacGill and others will give speeches at the Center for Creative Photography today at 5 p.m.

    “”I decided I wanted to be a curator or a gallery owner. I was lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time.””

    -Peter MacGill,
    founder and president of the Pace/MacGill Gallery

    MacGill, founder and president of the Pace/MacGill Gallery in New York, graduated from the UA in 1977 and was the first student to graduate from the MFA program. While living in New York in 1973, MacGill worked as an intern in the Light Gallery. His boss at the time was Harold Jones.

    “”He was a big deal,”” MacGill said. “”He shared a lot of his knowledge and passion for photography with me.””

    After graduating in 1977, MacGill realized that a career in photography was not in his future.

    “”I figured out that I wasn’t a good enough photographer to make a living,”” MacGill said. “”I decided I wanted to be a curator or a gallery owner. I was lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time.””

    MacGill said he went on to found and become president of the Pace/MacGill Gallery, which has showcased artists such as Irving Penn and Harry Callahan. Still, when MacGill thinks of photographers with impact, his mind continually goes back to Jones.

    “”I think the UA has been really lucky to have somebody who has such a big view of what photography can be and how it can influence the world,”” MacGill said. “”From the Center for Creative Photography to the art department, (Jones) has had such a tremendous influence. Photography simply wouldn’t be what it is today without Harold Jones, and that’s a fact.””

    The dedication to Jones will feature several of Jones’ students and alumni in addition to MacGill.

    Jones could not be reached for comment.

    Ann Simmons-Myers, head of the photography department at Pima Community College, said she is looking forward to the impact that the speakers will have on the students.

    “”This lecture series will provide important opportunities between UA and Pima Community College photography students as they interact with some of the highest caliber professionals in the nation who were educated under Harold’s guidance,”” Simmons-Myers said.

    Simmons-Myers is a member of the Harold Jones Distinguished Alumni committee, which chooses the speakers that honor Jones each year.

    Minnette Burges, a member of the Harold Jones Distinguished Alumni committee, said she believes that the series of speakers will influence the photographers of tomorrow.

    “”Connecting the present student to the achievements of past graduates reinforces the magic of inspiration,”” Burges said. “”Professor Harold Jones offered inspiration, which in turn produced many graduates who have accomplished important work in the world of photography … Peter MacGill’s presentation will be a fabulous event, filled with a fascinating look into his life and his perspective at the center of the world of art photography.””

    MacGill said he feels honored to pay tribute to his mentor and close friend.

    “”It’s a privilege to be able to come out and give a talk in honor of someone who had so much impact on my life,”” MacGill said. “”He was an influence on what I did for my life’s work.””

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