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2018 SPE Annual Conference: Uncertain Times: Borders, Refuge, Community, Nationhood / Hosted by The University of the Arts

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IS PHOTOGRAPHY ENOUGH? Interdisciplinary Approaches Beyond the Still Image

When November 10-11, 2017
Where 118 Elliot, Brattleboro, Vermont
Keynote Speaker Hannah Frieser

Honored Educator John Willis

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Presentation Proposal Deadline:
September 17th, 2017 at 11:59pm (EST)

More than one trillion photographs are estimated to be made this year alone. With billions of phone-cameras in circulation, and the power to share images instantly and globally, can we still define a photographer, an artist, or even the medium itself? In a world permeated by the still image, how much does any single photograph or single moment matter? More and more artists are pushing the boundaries of photography by blending images with text, video, sculpture, collage, performance, and installation. Others remain drawn to the still image and interactions between a camera and the real world, maintaining that photographic staples like analog processes, books, and prints may be more relevant than ever.

Photography is a medium born out of technological progress, reinvented several times in its short history, and yet it continues to evolve. This raises important questions about its future for photographers and educators alike. The 2017 SPE-NE Conference considers the ways in which contemporary photographers integrate other mediums into their work as well as how artists from other fields are co-opting photography. What do we gain by working interdisciplinarily and what might we be losing along the way? Do pictures alone still have the power to affect change, to facilitate conversations, or to communicate emotions and ideas? Is photography enough?


We welcome presentation proposals from SPE member and non-member photographers, writers, educators, curators, historians, and artists/professionals from other fields. Information about memberships can be found at

We encourage that proposed topics be theme-based, but it is not required. You may submit more than one proposal if you wish to submit to more than one presentation category. Create a written proposal with the following information in this order:

1. Your name

2. State which category you are submitting to from one of the following five options:
Academic Practicum Workshop (45 min) a lecture, demonstration, or panel that addresses pedagogy.
Lecture (30 min)- a presentation on an historical topic, theory, or another artist's work.
Panel (60 min)- a group led by a moderator to discuss a chosen topic.
Imagemaker (30 min) a presentation on the artist's own work.
Imagemaker PechaKucha Series (6 min 40sec) a timed presentation of 20 slides of the artist's own work. What is a PechaKucha presentation?

3. Title of your presentation proposal.

4. A description of your presentation, no longer than 300 words.

5. If submitting a Panel or Lecture, include a bio for each potential speaker (images are optional).

6. Save your document as a PDF and email to:

7. If submitting an Imagemaker or PechaKucha Series, attach 10 supporting images saved as: JPEG, sRGB Color, max quality, 1200px long dimension, Name your jpg's this way: lastname_## (example: johnson_01.jpg)


The submission deadline of September 17th, 2017 at 11:59pm (EST) is final. Late or incomplete proposals will not be accepted. Presenters will be notified by October 1st, 2017. Selected presenters register for the conference at a 50% discounted rate. Final digital presentations will be due by October 31st, 2017. All presentations will be scheduled during the conference dates: November 10–11, 2017.

Juried Exhibition Deadline: 
September 17th, 2017 11:59pm (EST)

This exhibition is juried by Joshua Farr, Executive Director of the
Vermont Center for Photography 
and will be held at 118 Elliot during the 2017 SPE-Northeast Chapter Conference. Exhibition receptions will be held during the Brattleboro Gallery Walk and the SPE-Northeast Conference, and the show will be on view for most of the month of November.

Submissions for the Juried Exhibition are FREE
for those registered to attend the conference, $20 for SPE members or students, or $30 for non-members! Visit this link for more info and to submit your work before the deadline:

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