Cart Search

2020 Annual Conference


March 05-08, 2020

submit Remember my login

2020 SPE Annual Conference: Hosted by The University of Houston | Kathrine G. McGovern College of the Arts | School of Art

Looking for a chapter event?

Past SPE Annual Conferences


submit news

Posted April 28, 2016 in Press Releases

[Hyphen] Americans photographs by Keliy Anderson-Staley to open at SPE National Gallery May 2016

Author: SPE National

The Society for Photographic Education (SPE) will open its summer exhibition [Hyphen] Americans, featuring tintype portraits by renowned wet-plate photographer, Keliy Anderson-Staley, Friday, May 13, from 5:00 to 8:00 pm. The exhibition runs through July 29, 2016. [Hyphen] Americans features more than 130 individual portraits made over the past seven years, many of which have never been seen by the public until now. Anderson-Staley will present an informal gallery talk during the opening reception and will be available to sign copies of her book On a Wet Bough, recently published by Waltz Books.

What is our place in history and what is the role that photographic technologies and the history of photography play in defining identity?

These are two questions that Anderson-Staley approaches in her exhibition [Hyphen] Americans. Anderson-Staley has worked with the 19th century wet-plate collodion tintype process for more than 11 years. This exhibition features a selection of images from a larger series of nearly a thousand photographs. Her work depicts a broad cross-section of American faces that resist immediate categorization. The sitters, identified only by a first name–defiantly assert his or her self-hood, staring back at the viewer with a bold penetrating intensity. The milky, almost haunting, looking surfaces of her tintypes elicit timelessness despite their contemporary context. Anderson-Staley’s sitters become detached from time, effectively redefining assumptions we may hold due to perceived identity politics.

Anderson-Staley will further engage the Cleveland community with a wet-plate collodion demonstration and portrait session in addition to a wet-plate collodion workshop May 14 and May 15, respectively. Those interested in learning more about the tintype process are invited to join SPE on Saturday, May 14 from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm for a wet-plate collodion demonstration and portrait session. Anderson-Staley will set up a photo-booth on the premises, using a wooden camera and antique brass lenses, and will make portraits of visitors while she explains the process to observers. Sitters will watch their portrait develop in front of their eyes and will be provided with a digital copy of their portrait. This event is free and open to the public.

Those interested in the nuts and bolts of the tintype process are encouraged to pre-register for our Wet-plate Collodion Workshop, Sunday, May 15. Anderson-Staley will walk participants through a one-day wet-plate collodion workshop where they will learn step by step how to make a wet-plate tintype. Students will prepare and hand mix the chemistry, set up and make an exposure using large format wooden cameras, and develop and varnish the final plates. All materials and equipment are included in the price of the ticket. Visit our website to learn more,

Keliy Anderson-Staley is a Houston-based artist. She was born in Maine, and received her BA Degree from Hampshire College in Massachusetts, and her MFA Degree in photography from Hunter College in New York City. She is Assistant Professor of Photography and Digital Media at the University of Houston. Anderson-Staley's images are in the permanent collections of the Library of Congress, Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, Portland Museum of Art (Maine), and Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. She was the recipient of a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship, a Puffin Grant, a fellowship from the Howard Foundation, the Carol Crow Fellowship from the Houston Center for Photography, and the Clarence John Laughlin Award from the New Orleans Photo Alliance. Her work was published in a solo issue of Light Work’s Contact Sheet and has been shown at the National Portrait Gallery of the Smithsonian Institution, Akron Art Museum, Bronx Museum of Art, Southeast Museum of Photography, and the California Museum of Photography, as well as at a number of galleries around the country. Anderson-Staley has been making wet-plate collodion tintypes and ambrotypes for twelve years. On a Wet Bough, a monograph of her tintype portraits, was published in 2014 by Waltz Books. She is represented by Catherine Edelman Gallery, Chicago, IL.

[Hyphen] Americans is made possible, in part, through the generous support of The Joy Family Legacy Foundation and Bostick & Sullivan. | (505) 474-0890

Please call (216) 622-2733, or visit us online at for more information.

[Hyphen] Americans will be on view through July 29, 2016, and is free and open to visitors Monday through Friday, 10:00 am – 4:00 pm, and by appointment. For sales and press inquiries, please email Caitie Moore at

view the original article

download pdf file

Related Member: Keliy Anderson-Staley

Email Sign Up

SPE email updates contain resources, news, and more!

About this piece

Comments about this piece

Dialogue and critique are important to the SPE mission.
Please join the conversation.

Exit Full Screen Mode