In March, I’m planning to attend the 47th SPE (Society for Photographic Education) National Conference in Philadelphia, PA. SPE is a non-profit membership organization that provides a forum for the discussion of photography-related media as a means of creative expression and cultural insight. The main focus of the conference is “Facing Diversity: Leveling the Playing Field in the Photographic Arts,” it will examine how photographers of diverse backgrounds participate in the art world today and how these artists are being received. The conference will look at inclusively, diversity within diversity, and the various perspectives on the changing cultural dynamics of this country. It strives to bring together curious minds in celebration of the achievements by artists of all backgrounds.
The conference program will:
• Discuss what diversity means within the framework of photography
• Examine how artists have expressed themselves on the topics of race, culture, ethnicity, religion, class, gender, sexual preference, and age
• Identify how these issues are being discussed in the art world and in the classroom today
• Investigate the vocabulary required to discuss diversity in the arts today
SPE is partnering with En Foco to bring together photographic educators, artists, and scholars from around the nation to address issues of diversity within the field of photography. En Foco is a non-profit photography organization dedicated to nurturing and supporting photographers of diverse cultures, primarily those of Latino, African and Asian heritage, and Native Peoples of the Americas and Pacific. This event is extremely dear to my heart, so I’m determined to go at any cost (even if I do go broke :/). Today, I am competing in a field particularly dominated by the majority, so being Native American and a woman I have to work 10x harder to accomplish my goals.