Panel Discussion

Writing with Light: Photography in Motion—An Interdisciplinary Discussion between a Photographer and a Physicist

“We all know what light is, but it is not easy to tell what it is.” —Samuel Johnson

Photography is understood to be instantaneous, capturing a split-second in time by trapping light onto a piece of film. But is this really the case?

Artist Adad Hannah is well known for pushing the boundaries of what photography “is,” masking moving video as still photographs, portraying motion through stillness, and playing with how we comprehend optics. Dr. Sarah Burke is a professor in the Department of Physics & Astronomy and the Department of Chemistry at UBC, who understands photography from its most basic unit, the photon, and how this is translated into what it is humans see—or what we think we see.

Hannah and Burke discuss the medium of photography from their differing viewpoints of artist and scientist and attempt to pin down what, exactly, makes a photograph “a photograph.”

The talk will be moderated by John O’Brian, professor of Art History at UBC. He has specialized in modern art history, theory, and criticism. His current research is on nuclear photography in North America and Japan.

Doors at 5 pm; talk at 6 pm sharp.

Writing with Light talks are FREE and open to the public, though RSVP is required: [email protected]

Capture Photography Festival and Inform jointly inaugurate an annual speaker series entitled Writing with Light that explores the state of photography today. Convening luminary artists, curators, and researchers will discuss how lens-based technology is transforming culture.

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