PHOTO books today | Symposium

Keynotes: Friday, February 6th, 7:30 pm  

Symposium: Saturday, February 7th,   9:00am - 5:30pm


$80.00 general, $40.00 students with ID


San Francisco Art Institute Lecture Hall
800 Chestnut Street
San Francisco, Ca (at Jones Street) 



Photographers have more options than ever before for presenting their work as a book – and meanwhile the notion of the photo book itself is changing, no longer bound by the limitations of the traditional monograph. There is a burgeoning market for photography in book form, with many new publishers, dealers, and gallery imprints serving a rapidly growing number of collectors. This symposium will address several issues of value to photographers and to anyone interested in photo books. Topics include:

· Building the photo book – conceptual and technical issues:           print on demand; high-end, crafted editions; digital editions and hybrid digital/print editions; finding collaborators; services for hire

· Finding and connecting with the audience:                                            dealers, distributors, collectors, libraries

· Photo-based artists’ books – thinking beyond the monograph 

· Publishing as a business and an art form

· The advantages and limitations of digital technology



      Keynote Presenters, Michael Light & Clifton Meador


Keynotes:  Friday February 6, 7:30pm

Michael Light and Clifton Meador

{Separate admission, free to symposium registrants}


 Saturday, February 7

8:30 am to 5:30 pm



8:15am   Registration opens and coffee available

Lecture Hall

9:00-9:15 Introduction & overview - Steve Woodall

9:15 – 9:45 Traditional publishing and new models: past, present and future- Tate Shaw

 Photobook Publishing as a Collaborative Art Form

A survey of current collaborative photo-book publishing types, this presentation engages ideas of agency, asking how many "authors" we should consider for historically minded interpretation of photo-bookworks. Most discussions about photo-books are centered upon the makers of the photographs, whereas this presentation considers publishing as an art form.


9:45-11:15 Panel One: Publishing (Models)

Speaker 1: Self-published / print-on-demand – Eileen Gittens

Speaker 2: Self-published small editions – Luis Delgado

Speaker 3: New funding models for established publishers – Amelia Lang

Speaker 4: Mainstream publishing today – TBA


11:15 – 12:45 Panel Two: From design concept to distribution

Speaker 1: Design considerations for the conventionally published book – Robert Aufuldish

Speaker 2: Working with a publisher – TBA

Speaker 3: Designing and marketing the photo artist’s book ­­– Phil Zimmermann

Speaker 4: Working with photographers, starting an Imprint – John Demeritt



12:45 – 1:45 LUNCH BREAK


Lecture Hall

1:45-2:45 Round Table: Photo Books and Their Audience: Distributing, Selling, Collecting

Speaker 1: Book Dealer – TBA

Speaker 2: Gallery – TBA

Speaker 3: Library – Jeff Gunderson


Studio 8, Studio 18, Studio 16,

2:45 – 4:15:  breakout sessions, various studio rooms

Talking about books: presenters and selected others showing and discussing books



4:15- 5:15 reception 





Michael Light is a San Francisco-based photographer, bookmaker, and pilot whose focus is the environment and how contemporary American culture relates to it. His work is concerned both with the politics of that relationship and the seductions of landscape representation, particularly as found in the arid Western spaces of America. He works with found appropriated imagery gleaned from public archives and his own 4 x 5" negatives, most often taken from the air. Visual books are at the root of most of his output.


Clifton Meador is Chair of the Department of Art at Appalachian State University in Boone, NC.

"I am a writer, photographer, printmaker, and designer. I combine these disciplines to make artist’s books that explore how the narratives of culture, history, and place are the basis for identity. Human identity is not monolithic, nor is it a simple linear narrative, and I use the book as a strategy to present this complexity. Who we are depends on who is asking; and the book, as an artistic vehicle, offers countless ways to create complex, engaging narratives."


Additional program participant bios arriving soon!



Support for this program comes from these generous organizations and businesses: