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THE BAUM AWARD for an Emerging American Photographer

Tenth Anniversary 2001-2016

Dedicated In loving memory of Melva Bucksbaum & To Mary Scanlan and the Scanlan Family Foundation for helping make the Baum Award a reality


The Baum Award : In Reflection


he Baum Award for an Emerging American Photographer has just celebrated its fifteenth year of existence with the naming of its tenth recipient. The intelligence of this award is that it is neither a grant nor fellowship to a young photographer nor is it a recognition for a long and distinguished career. Instead, the Baum Award was conceived to serve as a catalyst for an emerging or mid-career photographer to allow them the means and the time to explore new avenues of creativity. The ten photographers honored have proved the wisdom of this endeavor. We live in a very different visual world than when the first Baum Award was given in 2001. With the advent of the smartphone, everyone has suddenly become their own personal photographer and videographer for better or for worse. This phenomenon has both elevated, through popularity, yet also coarsened, through ubiquity, the photographic image. There is nothing in their artistic visions that links the five women and five men that comprise the Baum Award photographers to date, except their obvious creativity and professionalism. This is as it should be.

“If I could tell the story in words, I wouldn’t need to lug a camera.”

- Lewis Hine

The poet, Wallace Stevens, wrote, “Most modern reproducers of life, even including the camera, really repudiate it. We gulp down evil, choke at good.” So it is with many of the Baum Award photographers. It is not that they embrace the unfortunate truths captured through their lenses. Instead, they confront the world and seek to understand it through their art. Other Baum Award photographers are deeply involved with the inventive manipulation of the medium through expansion of processes into abstracted aesthetic figments of life. The vitality of the Baum Award is reflected in the variety of the artistic visions represented. Photography is more interwoven into our lives than ever before. The Baum Award will continue to seek out and encourage, as it has in the past fifteen years, artistic souls who explore and elevate this ever-evolving medium.

Robert Flynn Johnson

Curator Emeritus Achenbach Foundation for Graphic Arts Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco 5




n 2001, the Baum Award for an Emerging American Photographer was a gleam in the eye of its founders, Glenn and April Bucksbaum. The hope from the start was to have the award provide support to an emerging photographer at a critical point in their career when resources may be non-existent and visibility is crucial to success. The Baum Award is rooted in the belief that contributions artists make to our lives are essential to a healthy and vital society. Artists build connections among peoples across space and time, stimulate our imagination and illuminate the human experience. This was how The Baum Award was established, with the help and contributions of many people.

The Baum Award has evolved over the years from the careful and diligent efforts of our partners, colleagues, curators, curatorial assistants and many volunteers. New nominators and jurors are selected each year. All have provided strong professional advice and implemented good ideas that have helped the award to evolve. In celebration of the 10th Baum Award for an Emerging American Photographer, special recognition goes to curators Nora Kabat Dolan, Heidi Zuckerman, Sharon Tanenbaum, Chuck Mobley and Heather Snider, who helped shape the award into a meaningful and affirmative experience for the recipients.

The Baum Award provides a $10,000 cash grant to the recipient as well as a fully executed exhibition. It aims to bring awareness to photography as an art form by celebrating the work of a talented and innovative photographer with each recipient. The award recognizes that emerging photographers require assistance and financial support as they launch their careers. The goal of the Baum Award is to give artists the time and materials necessary for their ongoing creative work with the hope that by bringing the artists’ work to the public, their creativity can be sustained by the recognition they receive.





2001 - 2016


Deborah Luster / 2001

Deborah Luster / 2001 The first annual Baum Award was presented in 2001 to Deborah Luster and hosted by the Friends of Photography Ansel Adams Gallery in San Francisco, with curatorial oversight by Nora Kabat Dolan. As a child, Luster was the reluctant subject of many family photographs. She lived with her grandmother following her parents’ divorce and it was these childhood photographs that kept her mother connected to her life. Years later, in 1988, Luster’s mother was murdered by a contract killer, an event that affected her profoundly. As the only person to know the identity of her mother’s killer, Luster spent years in fear that she would be killed next. A decade had passed since her mother’s murder when Luster, by then an aspiring photographer, found herself drawn to the prisons of the Louisiana countryside. One fateful afternoon she decided to knock on the door of a prison to ask permission to photograph the inmates, and thus began her project, One Big Self: Prisoners of Louisiana. The project resulted in an archive of 10,000 plus portraits and a published collaboration with acclaimed poet, C.D. Wright. Luster has said that One Big Self is an effort to “ward off forgetting, [and] an opportunity for those inmates to present themselves as they would [like to] be seen.” In 2001, Luster’s work swept the Baum Award jury with photographs that peered into hidden worlds of family, crime, and incarceration through her portraits of men and women in the Louisiana prison system. From this recognition in 2001, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art acquired selections of the work from One


Big Self. Winning the Baum Award afforded her the time to make prints for her book, One Big Self: Prisoners of Louisiana, which was released in 2003 by Twin Palms Publishing. In 2002, Luster received the John Gutmann Photography Fellowship from the San Francisco Foundation, and the Anonymous Was a Woman award. The works in Luster’s second monograph, A Tooth for an Eye: A Chorography of Violence in Orleans Parish (2011), are an examination of homicide sites in New Orleans. This series of unassuming photographs are beautiful in their simplicity and composition. The photographs are eloquently framed as if gazing through a round window. Yet a small card that states the details of the homicide – the date, the location, the name of the victim, the manner of their death – accompanies each image, saturating the work with deeper meaning, each their own dark story. At the heart of A Tooth for an Eye, Luster tells the story of another invisible population, those who were slain in the streets of New Orleans and nearly forgotten. In 2013, Luster was a recipient of the John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship. The many museums and galleries where her works are in the permanent collections include San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Smithsonian Art Museum, Washington, D.C.; and the Museum of Contemporary Photography, Columbia College, Chicago. As of 2016, she lives and works between New Orleans, Louisiana, and Ireland, and is represented by Jack Shainman Gallery in New York.

Tooth for an Eye disarchive # 01-13

Location : Florida Avenue and Congress (Florida) Date : April 1, 2008 Name : Charlie Hulbert (18) Notes : Multiple gunshot wounds.

Deborah Luster / 2001

Louisiana Correctional Institute for Women St. Gabriel, Louisiana Tooth for an Eye disarchive # 04-23

Location : Olive Meat Market, 8841 Olive Street (Hollygrove) Date : January 8, 2002 9:25 p.m Name : Brandon Aggison (17) Notes : Drive by shooting. A stranger used Aggison as a human shield.

Zelphea Adams DOC # 404954 DOB 12.19.71 POB New Orleans Sentence 25 years Children 3 Work Housekeeping

Despite the passage of years since the One Big Self official closure, Luster's career continues to be defined by her ground-breaking, genre-defining project. Her lectures are vital in that she describes the many facets of her projects. 11

Luis Gispert / 2003

Luis Gispert / 2003 The second Baum Award was presented to Luis Gispert in 2003, with curatorial oversight by Heidi Zuckerman of the Berkeley Art Museum. Gispert was born in New Jersey in 1972 to a family who had fled Cuba during the 1960s. Raised in Miami, Florida, his work is highly influenced by his early life, steeped in an era ruled by hip-hop and pop culture. Initially drawn to filmmaking, he received his Bachelor of Fine Art from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago before he pursued photography, earning a scholarship to the Master of Fine Arts program at Yale University. Described as “at once baroque and surreal,” Gispert’s series, Urban Myth Pt. 1, earned him the 2003 Baum Award. The series features a signature juxtaposition of baroque composition and religious imagery with the social and material icons of pop culture, including cheerleaders, gaudy jewelry, and oversized boom boxes. In this body of work, he weaves together notes of a patriarchal history with symbols of modern American culture composed into elaborately staged scenes. Gispert’s work took a distinctive new direction with his 2011 series, Decepción, which showcased tricked-out cars, unsparingly upholstered in faux designer prints, through images surreally lit and photographed from inside the back seat looking out. He expertly paired each of these lavish interiors to a vast landscape seen stretching beyond the front windows. As a series, the work is an artistic documentation of a culture fueled by the reign of top fashion icons.


Themes of popular culture and its many icons have continued to appear in Gispert’s work taking form in sculpture and film (many incorporating a seemingly endless supply of classic boom boxes), as well as his distinctive photographic style. Known for work that is often colorful and bold, he turned to a more minimalistic approach in his series, All Oyster, No Pearl (2012). While still reflecting on the absurdity of pop culture, he captures silhouettes of modern material icons portrayed in silver gelatin prints: bulky white headphones with two large silver hoop earrings dangling below each earphone; chairs balanced precariously using basketballs; a chair suspended by a single chain. While All Oyster, No Pearl is in some ways more subtle than his earlier work, he stays true to his roots by singling out the small things that reflect the material overabundance of American culture. In a tangent from photography, Gispert’s 2015 series, Agua Regia, features a dozen compositions of gold chains cast expressively across fabricated backgrounds of black gravel. Many of the pieces are named after club music icons, launching the pure composition into the arena of cultural commentary. Gispert’s work has exhibited internationally and is included in the collections of the Guggenheim Museum, New York; the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; and the Miami Art Museum, among others. As of 2016, he lives and works in New York City and is represented by Stefan Lundgren Gallery in Spain.

Luis Gispert, Bedroom, from Urban Myth pt. 1, 2003

Luis Gispert, Burberry, from Decepciรณn, 2011

Luis Gispert, Double Double, from All Oyster, No Pearl, 2012

Luis Gispert / 2003

Through the juxtaposition of the familiar and the unexpected, Luis Gispert reinvents the baroque drama, drawing from religious and pop cultural icons.

Luis Gispert, Dinner Girls, from Urban Myth pt. 1, 2002


Katy Grannan / 2004

Katy Grannan / 2004 The third Baum Award was presented to Katy Grannan in 2004 under the curatorial supervision of Heidi Zuckerman of the Berkeley Art Museum. Grannan was born in 1969 in Arlington, Maine, and grew up with her father who worked as an undertaker, inevitably exposing her to the reality of mortality and death at an early age. She established her affinity for portraiture photography during her time at Yale University, where she received her Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in 1999. For one of her first projects during the MFA program, she posted an advertisement in the local newspaper calling for volunteer models to be photographed. Initially, she would only photograph women, but as she became more comfortable working with strangers, she branched out and photographed anyone that answered her advertisement. Grannan’s striking portraits examine the desire of her subjects to offer themselves up to the camera lens. “We believe we’re presenting ourselves one way, but the camera always reveals something more vulnerable despite our best efforts,” she says. In the beginning, she would go into the homes of her subjects to photograph them. Eventually, she began to select natural settings and captured the models in a variety of locations: from rivers and beaches to forests and parks. Many of the people had never modeled before and were just looking for a change of pace, bringing a quality of honesty and vulnerability to her artistry that speaks to the relationship between artist and subject. This series of photographs was selected for the Baum Award in 2004


and later became, Model American: Katy Grannan, the artist’s first monograph, published by Aperture in 2005. After moving from New York to San Francisco in 2006, Grannan began working with others who had migrated west in search of the proverbial blue skies and dreams to be fulfilled. These photographs became her second monograph, The Westerns, published by San Francisco’s Fraenkel Gallery. In 2015, her projects, The 99, and, Boulevard, marked the beginning of her “street photographs,” a period when she took to the streets of Los Angeles and San Francisco to photograph marginalized communities. She worked with individuals over a period of weeks, or even months, to capture the characters of people otherwise invisible to society. These photographs evolved into works that gravitated away from previous scenes set in the individual’s home or a natural setting, to the use of bright white backdrops that cast the viewers’ full attention on the person staring back. Grannan’s photographs were included in the 2004 Whitney Biennial. Her solo exhibitions include the Arles Photography Festival in France; 51 Fine Art in Antwerp, Belgium; Artemis Greenberg Van Doren Gallery; and Salon 94 in New York. Grannan's work is included in the collections of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Guggenheim Museum, and the Whitney Museum in New York. As of 2016, she lives and works in Berkeley, California, and is represented by Fraenkel Gallery, San Francisco, and Salon 94, New York.

Brian, b. 1976, from Mystic Lake, 2004

Roberta, b. 1981, from Mystic Lake, 2004

Katy Grannan / 2004

Through each distinctive portrait, Katy Grannan draws from the mundane, the overlooked, to highlight her subjects' individuality.

Anonymous, San Francisco, 2009, Boulevard

Anonymous, San Francisco, 2009, Boulevard


Lisa Kereszi / 2005

Lisa Kereszi / 2005 The fourth Baum Award was presented to Lisa Kereszi in 2005 under the curatorial supervision of Heidi Zuckerman of the Berkeley Art Museum. Kereszi was born in 1973 in Chester, Pennsylvania. As the daughter of a junkyard owner and antique collector, her life was far from glamorous. Nonetheless, she found ways to decorate her life, filling the walls of her bedroom with pictures she took of friends or images torn from magazines. Even though she loved to take photographs, she didn’t know how to make a career out of it. She was on track to be a writer, double majoring in English and photography at Bard University, until one prescient point in her college career when a professor told her she didn’t have the talent to make it as a writer. Dismayed but undeterred, she continued with photography and went on to receive a Master of Fine Art in Photography from Yale University in 2000. After graduation, Kereszi moved to New York City and worked as an assistant to photographer Nan Goldin. Goldin’s dark subject matter and avantgarde style resonated with Kereszi’s past, and the experience profoundly influenced her style. Not long after, in 2003, she and another photographer, Andrew Moore, were commissioned by the Public Art Fund to photograph Governor’s Island, the deserted government-owned island just outside of New York City. Out of this commission came some of Kereszi’s most notable works, such as “Water Fountain.” This


body of work included, Governors Island, the series for which she was recognized as the Baum Award recipient in 2005. Kereszi’s gritty images of empty and abandoned spaces in and around New York create dramas from the remnants of people’s lives and reveal her interest in fantasy, escape, and glamor. Her precise execution of photography captures the “mundane and overlooked” with a unique grace and familiarity that suggests a deeper story. In all of her work, one can see the reflection of the world that shaped her childhood– worn, simple, and unexciting. But from this, she is able to draw both intrigue and a melancholic beauty. Each series is compiled over decades, developing several simultaneously, as Kereszi explores different locales and the elements of what’s been left behind. Kereszi’s work has been included in group exhibitions at the Whitney Museum of American Art and the Bronx Museum of Art in New York. She also works successfully as a freelance photographer, and her work has appeared in The New Yorker, Nest, Details, Wallpaper, and other publications. She has served on the faculty at Yale University since 2004 as a Lecturer of Photography, and became Critic and Director of Undergraduate Studies in Art in 2013. She has published six monographs including, The More I Learn About Women, published by J&L Books in 2014. Lisa Kereszi is represented by Yancey Richardson Gallery in New York City.

Bus stop with sea spray, Governors Island, NY, 2003

Water Fountain, PS 26, Governors Island, NY 2003

Three windows under pool, Sunrise Resort, Conneticut. 2008

Lisa Kereszi / 2005

With an eye for haunting detail, Lisa Kereszi creates a striking catalogue of the unpolished scenes of days past through what was left behind.

Disco ball in box, Conneticut. 2008


Mike Brodie / 2008

Mike Brodie / 2008 The fifth Baum Award was presented to Mike Brodie in 2008 under the curatorial direction of Sharon Tanenbaum of SF Camerawork. Brodie was born in 1985 in Mesa, Arizona, and moved to Pensacola, Florida, when he was 15. At age 18, he was ready to leave his childhood behind and explore the United States by train. He hopped his first train to Jacksonville, Florida, with little more than a Polaroid camera and a pack of film given to him by a friend (after he’d found it on the back seat of her car). With this, he embarked on a journey that would last five years and take him over 50,000 miles back-and-forth across the U.S. and deep into an American subculture of train-hopping youth. Through his sojourn, Brodie has shared with us what’s been called, “one of the few, true collections of American travel photography.” His photography, spanning 2004 to 2009, documents his life on the edges of society with images that are raw and revealing. As a 20-year old photographer then living in Philadelphia, he had earned the nickname, “the Polaroid Kidd,” because up to that point in his life he had only shot Polaroid film on cameras found in thrift shops–until the film was discontinued. Brodie later transitioned to 35mm film and a Nikon he bought for $150 for the series of photographs entitled, That Rockaway Summer: Boys and Girls of Modern Days Railways. The series documents the lives of young people who hop trains and who are,


he says, “one of the most important, overlooked, and temporary underground cultures of modern times.” The archive of over 7,000 photos that make up Brodie’s work is for him a personal record of an exhilarating time in his life and for the rest of us a glimpse into the life of train-hopping youth. Since receiving the Baum Award in 2008, his photographs have been published in two books, A Period of Juvenile Prosperity (2013), his work from 2004 to 2006; and, Tones of Dirt and Bone (2014), his work from 2006 to 2009. Both were published by Twin Palms Publishers, with limited additions printed by TBW Books, and were followed by gallery exhibitions in New York, and Los Angeles. Following the publications, Brodie's work was also shown internationally at the Galerie Le Filles du Calvaire, Paris, France (2014), as well as at the Tokyo International Photography Festival in 2015, Tokyo, Japan. After several years of the train-hopping life, Brodie went to school at the Nashville Auto Diesel College and has been working as a mechanic ever since. Brodie has stated that he does not plan on returning to photography, despite (and perhaps in spite of) the wide praise and recognition his work has received. In 2006, he wrote: “The photos? I want people to see them, just as I want to tell someone a good story. Nobody enjoys boredom.” As of 2016, he lives and works in West Oakland, California.

#3018, from A Period of Juvenile Prosperity

#5065, from A Period of Juvenile Prosperity

#3102, from A Period of Juvenile Prosperity

Mike Brodie / 2008

Inspired by the rich experience of train-hopping and informed by the instant feedback of a Polaroid camera, Mike Brodie self-curated a remarkable collection of travel photography, documenting the life of America’s train-hopping youth.

#4832, from A Period of Juvenile Prosperity

All images from the series, A Period Of Juvenile Prosperity, 2006-2009 Š Mike Brodie, Courtesy of the artist, Yossi Milo Gallery / M+B Gallery


Sean McFarland / 2009

Sean McFarland / 2009 The sixth Baum Award was presented to Sean McFarland under the curatorial supervision of Chuck Mobley of SF Camerawork. McFarland was born in 1976 in Southern California and began his studies in computers and technology at Humboldt State University before he was lured to the art scene. As he dabbled in photography his senior year of undergraduate studies, about to earn his Bachelor’s in Science, he received three university awards for his photography work in 2002. By then, convinced of his interest in the arts, he continued to work with photography at the California College of the Arts and received his Master of Fine Art in 2004. In essence, McFarland’s work explores the relationships between history, photography, and the representation of landscape. As a lifelong Californian, McFarland was inspired by the landscape and, in his series entitled, Pictures of the Earth (2007-2012), he found a way to capture it authentically, yet differently, from the traditional iconic landscapes of the American West. His work considers our interaction with the landscape as well and the challenges of finding untouched terrain. He combines his own documentary-style photographs with found images to create mysterious and surreal landscapes in this series that earned him the Baum Award in 2009. Working both digitally and in an analog environment, McFarland has often used photo collage to create imagined scenes that cannot be found in the real world. He then re-photographs the collages with a Polaroid MP4 camera. The resulting images are an intriguing exploration of the relationship between fact and fiction. This approach blends the spontaneity and perceived truthfulness of a


Polaroid with the artifice of the new digital language. He notes, “By focusing on making images of the natural world I’m interested in making pictures of us, how we change the earth and how the earth changes us in return. I’m using Polaroid photographs as a witness to the landscape, showing us its history, our trace in it, and admiring its beauty.” McFarland’s fantastical landscapes upend our perception of reality and challenge the veracity of the photograph. Continuing this examination of how we experience the natural world, his project, Dark Pictures (2007-2012), focuses on woodlands. From the darkness, fine details surprisingly emerge to reveal a lush image. Though they read as wilderness, in many instances the areas have been created by human interaction with the land. McFarland’s series titled, Glass Mountains (2012-present), continues the exploration of the landscape motif. The works include photographs of everyday objects physically altered and presented to mimic the natural landscape. Layered together in a manner reminiscent of nesting dolls, his landscapes demand attention, calling for a closer look at what is really there. In 2009, in addition to receiving the Baum Award, McFarland was granted the John Gutmann Photography Fellowship and then in 2011 received the Eureka Fellowship. His photographs are held in collections at the Oakland Museum of California, the Milwaukee Art Museum, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Whitney Museum of American Art Library in New York. He has exhibited at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Berkeley Art Museum, White Columns, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts and Aperture Foundation. As of 2016, Sean McFarland lives in San Francisco and teaches art at San Francisco State University and is represented by Casemore Kirkeby Gallery, San Francisco.

Moutains (shift), 2016, from Glass Mountains Archival Pigment Print 40x30”

Sea, 2007-2008, from Pictures of the Earth Diffusion Transfer Print 4.25x3.25” Sean McFarland / 2009

Employing the breadth of photographic processes, Sean McFarland continues to challenge our expectations for the landscape. And through his artifice, the landscape is redefined.

Cave, 2013, from Glass Mountains Silver Gelatin Print 5x4”

Tracks, 2008, from Pictures of the Earth Diffusion Transfer Print 4.25x3.25”


Christopher Sims / 2010

Christopher Sims / 2010 The seventh Baum Award was presented to Christopher Sims in 2010 under the curatorial direction of Chuck Mobley of SF Camerawork. Sims was born in 1972 in Michigan, and grew up in Atlanta, Georgia. He received his undergraduate degree in history from Duke University in 1995 and later worked as a photo archivist at the Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C. The two years he spent as an archivist were extremely influential to his future photography career where his passion for history, documentation and photography grew. In 2003 Sims received a Master of Visual Communications from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and then proceeded to earn a Master of Fine Art from Maryland Institute College of Art in 2008. Influenced by his time as a Holocaust photo archivist, his work continued to examine war as he explored its place in history from a modern context. Recognized for the Baum Award in 2010, Sims’ photographs in, Theater of War: The Pretend Villages of Iraq and Afghanistan, depict the people and places that play a role in the fictitious “villages” that provide the U.S. military with training grounds for new soldiers. The villages serve as a strange and poignant way station for people heading off to war and for those who have fled it. Soldiers interact with pretend villagers, often recent immigrants from Iraq and Afghanistan who have now found work in America playing a version of themselves in the lives they left behind. He melds his understanding of history with his passion for photography, boldly changing the standard of war photography; instead of focusing on the destruction, pain, and blood, he captures the unseen sides of war for future generations.


Part activist, part historian, Sims documents the “unsensational” side of modern war. Continuing on this photo documentation of the strange and unseen, his second body of work, Guantanamo Bay, examines not the high-security prison as one would expect, but rather the American military outpost, bizarre and void of human presence. The photographs in this series capture the detritus of suburban America—playgrounds, pools, and clubhouses—abandoned and lackluster. In yet another perspective on the effects of war in American society, in the series, Hearts and Minds, begun in 2007, Sims captured the faces of young individuals participating in virtual war simulations. Cast in a room of isolated war experiences, the unique portraits demonstrate the virtual war experience of American youth. In 2012, Christopher Sims was named one of the “new Superstars of Southern Art” by Oxford American magazine, and he received the Arte Laguna Prize in Photographic Art in 2015. Exhibitions of Sims’ work have been staged at the Houston Center for Photography in Texas; the Griffin Museum of Photography; the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art in Charleston, South Carolina; the Light Factory in Asheville, North Carolina; and the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. His project, Guantanamo Bay, was featured in The Washington Post, the BBC World Service, Roll Call, and Flavorwire. As of 2016, Sims is the Undergraduate Education Director for the Center for Documentary Studies and a Lecturing Fellow in Documentary Arts at Duke University, Durham, NC. Christopher Sims is represented by Ann Steward Fine Art, Chapel Hill; Civilian Art Projects, Washington, D.C.; and Clark Gallery, Lincoln, Massachusetts.

Christopher Sims, Club Survivor, Camp America, 2006, from Guantรกnamo Bay

Christopher Sims, Jungle Gym, Naval Station, 2006, from series Guantรกnamo Bay Christopher Sims / 2010

Subtle, yet socially poignant, Christopher Sims' work captures the 'missing records' of modern war, documenting the strange and sometimes familiar facets of an American soldier's ancillary experience.

Christopher Sims, Green Mosque, Camp Mackall, North Carolina, 2007 from Theater of War: The Pretend Villages of Iraq and Afghanistan

Christopher Sims, Mother with Babies, Fort Polk, Louisiana, 2005, from Theater of War: The Pretend Villages of Iraq and Afghanistan


Eric William Carroll / 2012

Eric William Carroll / 2012 The eighth Baum Award was presented to Eric William Carroll in 2009 under the curatorial supervision of Chuck Mobley of SF Camerawork. Born and raised in the Midwest, Carroll began studying philosophy at Coe College before he received his Master in Fine Art for photography from the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, in 2006. His body of work is metaphorically rich and explores the materiality and contemporary use of the medium. Carroll’s work in photography, science, and nature explores the differences of how we experience, represent, and organize the world. Through his photographs, installations, and performances, Carroll creates visual and emotional connections that span enormous distances in space and time. When he received the Baum Award in 2012, Carroll described his work as an interest in, “organizing the universe through a purely visual language [using] a mixture of appropriated and original photographs.” He began his exploration of altering appropriated images during his project, Sunburned (2006-2007), when he collected rejected photographs of sunsets from one-hour photo shops and bleached them to create even more vivid colors. In his mind, doing this created a more realistic representation of the beauty and experience of a sunset. As part of the exhibition for the 2012 Baum Award at SF Camerawork, Carroll re-created his installation titled, This Darkroom’s Gone to Heaven. The initial installment took place in 2006 at the University of Minnesota and each iteration was composed of a built-in-place darkroom, structured from plywood and Masonite, equipped with a revolving lightproof door. In the dull, red glow of the safelights were shadows of the contents, cast on silver gelatin prints–memories of technologies past.


Nature and science, as well as methodology and the photographic process influence Carroll’s work. In, Blue Lines of Woods (2010 to present), he explores the ever-changing moment when a photograph is taken. For this project, he utilizes the diazo printing process (or blue-line printing) to capture silhouetted tree shadows. The long exposure creates depth in the work, but also the idea that time is passing in each panel of blurry leaves. The blue-line process allows the works to fade and change over time; from the first moment they are exhibited in a gallery they will never be the same again, thus amplifying the fleeting nature of time and archival instability of the photographs. All of Carroll’s ideas and work have merged in his recent science/art project entitled, G.U.T. Feelings, which explores the correlation between science and art through the scientific Grand Unified Theory (G.U.T.) that tries to merge the theories of the universe into a single system of understanding, much like his work tries to “organize the universe through a purely visual language.” In 2015, selections from this project were published in French newspaper Le Monde’s commemoration of the centennial of Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity. Carroll’s work has been exhibited in numerous cities across the United States and internationally, including Fotohof in Salzburg, Austria; the Camera Club of New York; Pier 24 Photography in San Francisco; Aperture Foundation; the Minneapolis Institute of Arts; and the Museum of Contemporary Photography in Chicago. He has participated in residencies at the MacDowell Colony in Peterborough, New Hampshire; Rayko Photo Center in San Francisco; and the Blacklock Nature Sanctuary in Moose Lake, Minnesota. As of 2016, Carroll lives in Minnesota and teaches at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota.

This Darkroom’s Gone to Heaven, (Installation) 2012

Sunburn 39, 2007 Eric William Carroll / 2012

At the intersection of science, philosophy and the evolution of the photographic process, Eric William Carroll creates both a meditation on process and a quixotic quest for understanding.

Blue Line of Woods, (Installation) 2013

Plato’s Home Movies, 2011


jamie Warren / 2014

Jaimie Warren / 2014 The ninth Baum Award was presented to Jaimie Warren in 2014 under the curatorial direction of Chuck Mobley of SF Camerawork. Warren was born in 1980 in Waukesha, Wisconsin, and attended the Kansas City Art Institute where she studied photography and experimented in performance work. Warren’s photographic works are elaborate forms of self-portraiture, employing makeup, props, costumes, prosthetics, and often a community of collaborators. Warren began her exploration into a unique style of self-portraiture and photography in 2005 while traveling in India and Japan. While abroad, she played with inserting herself into different cultures, dressing like the popular subcultures she encountered, and posing in situations with her new friends and muses. A natural leader and a truly colorful character, Warren’s creations are reminiscent of grade-school projects turned into parties. Many of her photographs, including those from her series, Totally Looks Like, and, Celebrities as Food & Food’lebrities, are recreations of photoshopped images she culls from the Internet, refashioned without digital enhancements in a determinedly DIY (Do It Yourself) aesthetic. Her work explores the parameters of performance and identity in the context of art history, pop culture, and the Internet. Warren explains that she has taken "complete control of these staged scenes," and that she is "bringing contemporary culture and humor into the installations, costumes and characters [she's] creating.” She also prides herself on the number of community members that engage with her to transform her artwork. In, Art History Series, Warren combines her fascination in pop culture with knowledge of classical art icons, recreating works such as, Les Demoiselles d’Avignon, by Pablo Picasso,


with makeup, props, and a fresh imagination. Often the cast in the recreations are favorite characters and icons in her life, drawing personal significance through the raucous scene of the large community productions, as seen in, Self-portrait as Nun with some of my Mother’s Favorite Famous People in The Forerunners of Christ with Saints and Martyrs of the Fiesole San Domenico Altarpiece by Fra Angelic (2014). In addition to her work as a photographer, Warren is Co-Creator/Co-Director of the performance art and faux variety show, “Whoop Dee Doo.” Whoop Dee Doo hosts live, free shows and workshops within communities and under-served youth groups, both locally and nationally. Whoop Dee Doo has created commissioned projects for organizations including the Smart Museum, Chicago, IL; the Loyal Gallery, Sweden; the Time-Based Arts Festival/ Portland Institute of Contemporary Art, Portland, OR; the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA; and The Contemporary, Baltimore, MD. Since she received the Baum Award in 2014, she has been featured on the Art21 documentary series New York Close Up that chronicles artists in the first decade of their careers. She was also invited to be guest artist at the Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) public art course, “I Am a God: Artists, Obsession & the Cult of Celebrity Culture,” and later in 2015 to host MOMA’s first-ever teen lock-in event titled, “Jaimie Warren’s House of Horror.” In 2015, the New York Foundation for the Arts made her a fellow in Interdisciplinary Arts and she received a residency at the Abrons Art Center. As of 2016, she lives and works in Brooklyn, New York, where her work exhibits at The Hole, Higher Pictures, and American Medium galleries in New York City.

"Self-portrait as Nun with some of my Mother’s Favorite Famous People in the Forerunners of Christ with Saints and Martyrs of the Friesol San Domenico Altarpiece by Fra Angelico”, 2013, from That’s What Friends Are For collaboration

“Self-portrait as Tuna Turner by food’lebrities”, 2014, from Celebrities as Food & Food’lebrities series

Jamie Warren / 2014

In an amalgam of art history, pop-culture and her prolific imagination, Jaimie Warren's staged, performative photographs offer a reprieve from the often humorless fine art scene.

“Self-portrait as woman in Les Demoiselles d’Avignon by Pablo Picasso/Online Deceptions by MommaBird”, 2012, from Art History Series


Suné Woods / 2016

Suné Woods / 2016 The tenth Baum Award was presented to Suné Woods in 2016 under the curatorial direction of Heather Snider of SF Camerawork. Woods was born in 1976 and grew up spending summers on her grandparents’ farm in Ohio, returning to her home in Lantana, Florida, for the school year. The annual migrations of her childhood between cultural and natural landscapes of the Midwest and southern Florida helped to influence the nature of Woods’ work. Topics of race, culture, geography, and where one belongs are common threads throughout her work. Woods received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Miami in 1997 and her Master of Fine Art in Photography from the California College of the Arts in 2010. The photographs in the series, Bountiful Darkness (2010), composed for her MFA thesis, are an exploration of our expectations as a society for race and gender in the landscape, and an “attempt to reclaim spaces where resistance and violence were plentiful.” Spurred by the reactions to a self-portrait Woods took on her family’s farm in Ohio, her work in Bountiful Darkness is a series of rich and beautiful monochrome photographs of black women immersed in nature. The series addresses elements of her personal life as well as historical events. In, To Sleep With Terra,Woods creates photo collages and multi-channel video installations employing a combination of appropriated and created imagery to address sociological phenomenon, imperialist


mechanisms, and formations of knowledge. Her work engages absences and vulnerabilities within cultural and social histories translated through the absence/ presence of a physical body. Woods says she gravitated toward collage as a means to “understand more deeply how disparate things relate when they are mashed up in a visual conversation.” The imagery is used to untangle the relationship between violence, race, and the human spirit to create what she calls her own topographies. More than an act to create beauty or entertainment, Woods creates art as a conversation, a call for dialogue about some of the more challenging topics that haunt our societal psyche. In a 2016 interview with Britt Harrison for the website, Future Tongue, she said that she thinks there is “a power in a way that images are used to represent and determine how one is empowered or disempowered.” Woods is a recipient of the 2015 John Gutmann Photography Fellowship Award and the 2012 Visions from a New California Initiative. She has participated in residencies at the Headlands Center of the Arts in Marin, California, the Vermont Studio Center in Johnson, Vermont, and the Center for Photography at Woodstock in New York, and will be in residence at Light Work in Syracuse, New York, in 2016. At the time of receiving the 2016 Baum Award, she lives and works in Los Angeles where she is represented by Papillon Art.

Suné Woods, “Landings” 2015, (mixed media collage)

Suné Woods, “Mano a Mano” 2015, (photo collage)

Suné Woods / 2016

Through careful design and powerful juxtaposition, the work in To Sleep With Terra are symbolic, speaking to Suné Woods' rich observations of the role of race and gender in oppression.

Suné Woods, “Mothership” 2015, (pigment print)




A note from The Baum Foundation after ten years

The artists’ work and their passion for photography as an art form is what drove the Baum Award for An Emerging American Photographer project for over a decade. As we move forward, this same inspiration will guide the program. What’s most important to us is that photography continues to remain important to our culture and within the dialogue of its rightful place in contemporary society. We’ll continue to consult with our esteemed colleagues around the United States for input and to hear their views to ensure we are evolving, while remaining true to, the spirit of the award. Our hope is that others join in to support photography as a medium as well as the artists who put themselves out in the world creatively. Above all, we would like the Baum Award to uphold an intimate and emerging spirit, with a spotlight on emerging American photographers who have the potential and innovation to inform photography with their own artistic pursuits.



By Year - The Artist - Curator - Host Institution - Jury Baum Award 10th Anniversary

2001 Deborah Luster Host: Friends of Photography and Ansel Adams Gallery Curator: Nora Kabat Dolan Jury: Nora Kabat Dolan, former Curator of Exhibitions & Public Programs, SITE Santa Fe Proctor Jones, Jr., Photographer Robert Flynn Johnson, Curator in Charge of the Achenback Foundation for Graphic Arts, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco Sandy Phillips, Senior Curator of Photography, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art 2003 Luis Gispert Host: Berkeley Art Museum Curator: Heidi Zuckerman Jury: Cornelia Butler, Curator, Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles Heidi Zuckerman, Director and Chief Curator, Aspen Art Museum, former Phyllis Wattis MATRIX Curator at Berkeley Art Museum/Pacific Film Archive (BAM/PFA) Ralph Rugoff, Director of London’s Hayward Gallery, former Director of the Wattis Institute, California College of the Art and Craft 2004 Katy Grannan Host: Berkeley Art Museum Curator: Heidi Zuckerman Jury: Bob Riley, Director and Curator at the Nelson Gallery at UC Davis and former media arts curator, San Francisco Museum of modern Art Eungie Joo, Gallery Director and Curator of REDCAT in Los Angeles Nora Kabat Dolan, former Curator of Exhibitions & Public Programs, SITE Santa Fe Richard Misrach, landscape photographer 32

2005 Lisa Kereszi Host: Berkeley Art Museum Curator: Heidi Zuckerman Jury: Catherine Wagner, Artist Kevin E. Consey, Director and Chief Executive Officer at the University of California Berkeley Art Museum Robert Flynn Johnson, Curator in Charge of the Achenbach Foundation for Graphic Arts, Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco 2008 Mike Brodie Host: SF Camerawork Curator: Sharon Tanebaum Jury: Bill Arning, Director of Contemporary Arts Museum Houston (CAMH), former Curator, MIT List Visual Arts Center Chuck Mobley, Curator, SF Camerawork Eugene E. Trefethen, Jr., Chair Art History, Mills College Larry Rinder, Director of Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (BAM/PFA), former Dean of Graduate Studies, California College of the Arts Moira Roth, Eugene E. Trefethen, Jr. Professor of Art History, Mills College Susette S. Min, Associate Professor, Asian American Studies and Art History, University of California, Davis

2009 Sean McFarland Host: SF Camerawork Curator: Chuck Mobley Jury: Chuck Mobley, Curator, SF Camerawork Larry Sultan (1946-2009), artist and Professor of Photography, California College of the Arts Lisa Sutcliffe, Curator of Photography and Media Arts at the Milwaukee Art Museum, former Assistant Curator, Department of Photography, SFMOMA Pamela Lee, Jeanette and William Hayden Jones Professor in American Art and Culture, Stanford University Vince Aletti, photography critic, The New Yorker magazine 2010 Christopher Sims Host: SF Camerawork Curator: Chuck Mobley Jury: Bruce Hainley, contributing editor, Artforum, Los Angeles Chuck Mobley, Curator, SF Camerawork Erin O’Toole, Baker Street Foundation Associate Curator of Photography, SFMOMA Jack von Euw, Curator of The Bancroft Library Pictorial Collection, UC Berkeley Tina Takemoto, artist and Associate Professor of Visual Studies, California College of the Arts 2012 Eric William Carroll Host: SF Camerawork Curator: Chuck Mobley Jury: Abigail Solomon-Godeau, Professor Emeritus, Department of the History of Art and Architecture, UC Santa Barbara Chuck Mobley, Executive Director, SF Camerawork Hulleah Tsinhnahjinnie, Professor, Department of Native American Studies and Director C.N.Gorman Museum, UC Davis Julian Cox, Founding Curator of Photography and Chief Curator at the de Young Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco Sean McFarland, artist, educator, and recipient of the 2009 Baum Award

2014 Jaimie Warren Host: SF Camerawork Curator: Chuck Mobley Jury: Aspara DiQuinzio, Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art and Phyllis C. Wattis MATRIX Curator at the Berkeley Museum of Art and Pacific Film Archive (BAM/PFA) Chuck Mobley, outgoing Executive Director, SF Camerawork and editor of SF Camerawork Publications Heather Snider, incoming Executive Director, SF Camerawork Stephanie Syjuco, artist and Assistant Professor in Sculpture, UC Berkeley Tirza Latimer, Independent Curator, Chair and Associate Professor of Visual and Critical Studies, California College of the Arts 2016 SunĂŠ Woods Host: SF Camerawork Curator: Heather Snider Jury: Heather Snider, Executive Director, SF Camerawork Hesse McGraw, SF Art Institute, Vice President for Exhibitions and Public Programs Robert Johnson, The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Curator Emeritus Santhi Kavuri-Bauer, San Francisco State University, Curator and Lecturer Sergio De La Torre, San Francisco University, Artist and Lecturer



A Special Thanks To All Those Who Have Made This Happen Baum Foundation Staff

Contributions to this publication

Glenn Bucksbaum April Bucksbaum Jen Melcon Samantha Ostergaard Janet Garvin Elana Rosen Jan D’Alessandro Tessa Diem

Tessa Diem Content Director & Production Manager

Baum Award Artists Deborah Luster (2001) Luis Gispert (2003) Katy Grannan (2004) Lisa Kereszi (2005) Mike Brodie (2008) Sean McFarland (2009) Christopher Sims (2010) Eric William Carroll (2012) Jaimie Warren (2014) SunĂŠ Woods (2016)

Shreyash Shah Art Direction Marta Salas-Porras Shreyash Shah Cover Art Genevieve Angle Archival Research Maria Palmo Jack Middelstadt Support Research Chuck Mobley, Copy Editor Deanne LaRue, Proofing Christopher Doorley, Proofing Editorial Support Robert Flynn Johnson Introductory Letter GreenerPrinter Printer Cameron Wood (Luster) Hannah Hughes (Grannan) Lester Russo (Brodie) Artist Support



Profile for The Baum Foundation

The Baum Foundation  

10th Anniversary Edition

The Baum Foundation  

10th Anniversary Edition