Thursday, April 30, 2009

Shopping with OneCause: an Easy and Innovative Way to Help the Addison

Today we hear from new Blog Addison poster Samantha Katzen, Development Associate at the Addison. Samantha also works on the Addison's Facebook page, and encourages everyone to click here and become a fan.

"In these economic times…" How often have you heard that phrase lately? Fiscal prudence is important, but sometimes most of us still need (or want) to make certain purchases. Yet we also want to stretch our dollar and make every transaction count. If only there was a way for our everyday spending to be more productive!

Well, there is. Thanks to the wonders of online shopping and the internet’s capacity to merge capitalism and altruism, using OneCause can indeed make your purchases count twice. With virtually no effort on your part, you can help the Addison just by buying the things you were already going to buy, at no extra cost to you. To get started, all you need to do is register at and choose a cause to support (like, say, the Addison!). Then simply click the links to hundreds of popular stores like Amazon or Lands’ End, and shop as you normally would. A percentage of your total purchase is donated directly to the Addison and the process requires no extra steps on your part. You can also download a toolbar that allows you to go right to your online shopping sites without using the OneCause portal.

This is an easy and uncomplicated way to enhance the efficacy of your spending. Just think, if you booked a trip at Expedia by first going to, your cause would earn 1.25% of what you spend. For one $2,500 family vacation, that would mean over $30! It’s perfect for large purchases, like a new computer from Dell or the Apple store, but even small items add up—combine your $25 at with your friend’s $50 on eBay, and before long you collectively start to make a real difference.

On behalf the Addison, I hope you’ll consider using OneCause when you shop online. It’s easy, it’s free for you and free for the museum, and it lets you get the most out of every penny spent. What could be better, especially in these economic times?

Samantha Katzen
Development Associate

Thursday, April 23, 2009

You're invited - New Deal Photography at the Addison

Please join us on May 7th at 6:30pm in the School Room in Abbot Hall for New Deal Photography at the Addison Gallery, a program presented by the Addison Gallery of American Art and Andover Reads, an initiative from Andover's Memorial Hall Library.

Presenting a selection of original 1930s social documentary images from the Addison’s collection by some of the most well-known New Deal photographers such as Walker Evans, Dorothea Lange, and Russell Lee, and others, Addison Gallery of American Art’s Curator of Photography Allison Kemmerer and Director of Education Julie Bernson will explore the photograph’s multiple roles as historical document, persuasive tool, and work of art.

Program Location: Addison Gallery of American Art, Temporary Location, Abbot Hall, School Street, Phillips Academy (Click here to download a PDF with directions and a map.)

To register, contact Anna Gesing, 978-749-4023 or

Image: Arthur Rothstein, Father and Son in a Dust Storm, Cimarron County, Oklahoma, 1936, gelatin silver print, museum purchase, Addison Gallery of American Art, Phillips Academy, Andover, MA.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The Power of Photography

Where does the power of a photograph come from?
How does this power influence public perception?

Teachers who attended the Addison's spring Teacher Workshops, Reality and Representation: An Exploration of Intention, Perception, and History, took an in-depth look at the photographs of Dorothea Lange, among many others, in order to explore these questions.

This alternate version of Dorothea Lange's Migrant Mother is in the Addison's collection.

What strikes you about this image?
What differences do you notice between this image and the more familiar version?

The Library of Congress has in their collection the multiple photographs that Dorothea Lange took of Florence Owens Thompson and her children that day in February or March of 1936 in their migrant pea picker camp in Nipomo, California.

What differences do you notice between the five different versions of this image?
Why might one image have had more power than another?

This photograph remains one of the most requested items in the photography collection of the Library of Congress.

Why was this photograph selected above the others as a representation of the situation?
What has it become a symbol of?
What are the qualitities of an image that becomes an icon?

Lange's Migrant Mother has been reapproriated and recontextualized many times since its original publication in 1936. Here we see a 1964 version as the cover of Bohemia Venezolana, a Latin American magazine (from the collection of the New York Public Library) and a version by Malik that was used in the Black Panthers' Newspaper in 1973 (from the collection of the University of Virginia's Alderman Library).

What enables a photograph to have power beyond the moment in which it is taken?
How can the power of an image be transferrable?

If you want to know more about the Addison Gallery's Depression era photography, we invite you to attend our upcoming collaboration with the Memorial Hall Library, entitled New Deal Photography at the Addison Gallery, held in the Addison's temporary location in Abbot Hall, Phillips Academy, on May 7, 6:30-8:30pm. Please follow the link for more details on the event, location, and registration.

Posted by Jamie Kaplowitz, Education Fellow

Monday, April 6, 2009

Andover Bread Loaf, Addison Gallery, and Community

While the museum is closed, the Addison’s Education Department is embracing opportunities to collaborate with and reach out to our own community. In March, we had the pleasure to participate in Andover Bread Loaf's spring conference, Building Community and Literacy in the Classroom. On this Saturday morning, Andover Bread Loaf, partnering with Write/Right to Change, brought together an impressive audience of 80 enthusiastic attendees including K-12 teachers, students from elementary through high school, college professors, graduate school students, community organization staff, and a couple of parents, from Lawrence, Andover, Methuen, Haverhill, Boston, Cambridge, and from further destinations such as New York City, Clemson, SC, and Oakland, CA.

The eclectic group of students, teachers, and administrators who composed our conference workshop, The Narrative in Photography + Writing, explored the implied narrative of a single image and how that narrative changes when the image is a part of a sequence. What story does a single image tell? What would that one image say differently if it were a part of a series? And how can this be used in the classroom?

In Dawoud Bey's tripych Sara, Martin David and Tolani, what can we learn from a single panel?
- She seems like she has a lot going on. Her eyes are intense, wise.
- Her eyes, it's like they're staring at you. She watches you everywhere you go.
- She's a little serious and a little funny. Her eye, if I block one out, seems like I'm in trouble. Her other eye, maybe she's about to tell a joke.

What do the three panels together tell us compared to what we know from one panel?

- Their facial expressions change in the frames.
- The center is her identity and in the other two panels she takes on the role of mother.
- She's protective of the boy, the way her hand is laid across his chest. Maybe the girl can stand for herself. And her personality is in the middle.
- It's like two different worlds, the mother's clothing and the boy's clothing. Makes you think about clothing and identity.
- The three panels makes you see them as individuals.

In groups, we then created our own narrative series of photographs. The students were especially interested in using the artwork on display at the Essex Art Center to tell their story, exploring how rearranging the same nine images can create a new narrative and then presenting their writing to the group. Some teachers allowed the photo-taking to direct their story, while others first constructed their story and then sought out images to narrate it.

What does story does this series of images tell you? What narrative would you write?

(Photograph series by participating teachers)

A collaboration between Phillips Academy and the Bread Loaf School of English, Andover Bread Loaf works with U.S. and international public and private school teachers and students to enhance the teaching and learning of writing and to help catalyze educational renewal in classrooms, schools, school systems, and communities.

Posted by Jamie Kaplowitz, Education Fellow

The Addison Is Now on Twitter

Just a quick post to let all our Blog Addison readers know that the Addison is now on Twitter. We will be "tweeting" with important updates on a regular basis. You can start following the Addison here:

And remember, the Addison is also on Facebook. Click here to become a fan.

James M. Sousa
Associate Registrar for Collections and Archives