Picturing the News, in Color

March 25, 2015 (Wednesday) / 5:00 pm6:30 pm

Rainey Auditorium, Penn Museum, 3260 South Street

Picturing the News, in Color

Vanessa Schwartz

Director, Visual Studies Research Institute
Professor of History and Art History
University of Southern California 

For decades, journalistic objectivity was associated with black and white images. In this fascinating history of photojournalism since the 1950s, visual studies scholar Vanessa Schwartz tracks the transition to the now-ubiquitous color news picture, with particular attention to the career of Magnum photographer Ernst Haas, known as the "Paganini of Kodachrome."

Vanessa Schwartz is Professor of History, Art History and Film at the University of Southern California. She was founding director of the Visual Studies Graduate Certificate program from 2006–2009, returning in Fall 2013 to direct the new Visual Studies Research Institute and the Certificate program. She recently received the Raubenheimer Award, the highest faculty recognition in the College. Before joining the USC faculty, she taught at The American University in Washington, DC.

A historian of modern visual culture, Schwartz was trained in modern European history with a concentration on France and urban culture at Princeton (Phi Beta Kappa, 1986) and UC Berkeley where she received her PhD in 1993.

She is the author of It’s So French! Hollywood, Paris and the Making of Cosmopolitan Film Culture as well as Spectacular Realities: Early Mass Culture in fin-de-siècle Paris. Her most recent book is Modern France: A Very Short Introduction.

She is currently working on two book projects: the history of photojournalism and the dawn of the jet age. She has co-edited two books, Cinema and the Invention of Modern Life and The Nineteenth Century Visual Culture Reader and is currently co-editing, with Jason Hill, Getting the Picture: The History and Visual Culture of the News (Bloomsbury, forthcoming spring 2015).

Schwartz has been a fellow at the Getty Research Institute, the University of California Humanities Research Institute, and Harvard's Warren Center, and a visiting professor at Stanford, McGill, and Paris I, Sorbonne.