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2021 SPE Annual Conference: Imagining Legacy: Archives, Collections, and Memoria

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Cross-currents in Photobook Publishing

A Panel Moderated by M.V. Swanson.

Saturday, November 05 - 1:00PM to 2:30PM
Univ. of Arizona, Center for Creative Photography

Cross-currents in Photobook Publishing
A Panel Moderated by Mary Virginia Swanson.

Four very different photobook makers will make short presentations describing their own publishing efforts and methods, followed by a panel discussion. Deirdre Visser publishes Chroma in the Bay area, an imprint envisioned to promote pluralism within contemporary photography by fostering the visibility of emerging artists of African, Latino, Native American, Middle Eastern, North African, Asian, and Pacific Island heritage. Alejandro Cartagena is a Mexican photographer who self-publishes photobooks under his own name. His numerous book projects employ landscape and portraiture as a means to examine social, urban and environmental issues. Mike Slack publishes his own and others' idiosyncratic photobooks under the imprint The Ice Plant out of LA. Phil Zimmermann, from Tucson, publishes his own and other’s small and limited edition photobooks, often about border culture, via Spaceheater Editions. They will discuss their individual takes on the current photobook publishing environment.


Deirdre Visser, is Curator of The Arts at CIIS. As curator, educator, and publisher she strives to promote pluralism in the arts, to support artists in the creation of new work, and to foster dynamic and critical dialogues within and across communities that propose integrative approaches to the urgent questions we collectively face. Her exhibitions, publications and public programming with The Arts at CIIS have connected history to the present, both ethically and strategically, to look for common themes and engage historical context in a deeper understanding of the present. Her own photographic work addresses the social history and transformation of the landscape. She is also interested in non-traditional approaches to cultural production and cultivating collaborative relationships with communities.

Alejandro Cartagena Alejandro lives and works in Monterrey, Mexico. His projects employ landscape and portraiture as a means to examine social, urban and environmental issues. His work has been exhibited internationally and is in the collections of several museums including the SFMOMA, the Museum of Contemporary Photography in Chicago, the Museum of Fine arts Houston, the Portland Museum of Art, the Museo de Arte Moderno in Rio, Brazil, the Fototeca de Nuevo Leon, Mexico and the Fototeca Nacional in Pachuca, Mexico. He has received the Photolucida Critical Mass book award, the Lente Latino award in Chile, the Premio Salon de la Fotografia from the Fototeca de Nuevo Leon, the Premio IILA-Fotografia 2012 award in Rome and a POYi reportage award of excellence among other awards.

Mike Slack is the author of several photobooks including OK OK OK (J&L Books, 2002), Scorpio (The Ice Plant, 2006), and Pyramids (The Ice Plant, 2006), as well as Shrubs of Death (self-published, 2014). His work is in the permanent collection of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and he is a frequent contributor to Harper’s magazine. He lives and works in Los Angeles, where he is co-publisher of The Ice Plant, producing artist books and other printed matter since 2006.

Philip Zimmermann is an artist, designer, teacher and a professor in the College of Fine Art at the University of Arizona. His preferred medium is the visual narrative artists’ book. He publishes much of his own work, and the work of other artists, under the Spaceheater Editions imprint. Zimmermann has received an NEA Individual Fellowship and two New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowships among other awards. His work is in many museum, library and individual collections.


University of Arizona,
Center for Creative Photography

1030 N. Olive Rd.
Tucson, AZ 85721
(520) 621-7968

Streetcar Information (Sun Link)
Sun Link Route to UA / Center for Creative Photography & Downtown Tucson can be accessed via Sun Link Streetcar Stops at E. Helen St. & N. Warren Ave. or at E. 2nd Street between N. Warren Ave. & N. Cherry Ave. To Access the Center for Creative Photography & the Fine Arts Complex at the UA exit the Sun Link Streetcar at E. 2nd St. & N. Olive Road, then walk north on Olive Road.

Sun Link Streetcar Map:

Parking at University of Arizona, Center for Creative Photography
Parking at UA & for easy access to the Center for Creative Photography & the University of Arizona Fine Arts Center use the Park Avenue Garage located at the intersection of E. Speedway Blvd. and N. Park Ave. Proceed to the southeast corner of the garage and walk through the underpass to Olive Road. During the weekdays, visitor parking in Park Avenue Garage from 5am - 12am is on a space-available basis daily rates are $2.00 per hour with a maximum of $8.00 total per entry. From 5pm till midnight rates are $1.00 per hour with a maximum of $4.00 per evening. On the weekend, visitor parking in Park Avenue is free pending special event parking restrictions.

University of Arizona Campus and Parking Map:

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