MEDIUM Photo Festival
The Lafayette Hotel, Swim Club & Bungalows, San Diego
October 16-20, 2019
Written by Andi Campognone
I look at a lot of art every day, it’s my job. It is well known that I LOVE my job and will enthusiastically say yes to an opportunity to meet with an artist and discuss their work. Sadly, my schedule doesn’t allow my participation in every invitation but happily the invitation from scott b davis to be a guest Reviewer at MEDIUM Photo fit on the calendar.
Held each year in San Diego at the Lafayette Hotel Swim Club and Bungalows (and yes, it is as fabulous as its name implies) MEDIUM Photo is a well curated, intensive portfolio review for professional photographers. Unlike the speed dating-like process at many of the other portfolio reviews around the nation, MEDIUM feels personal and much more intimate.
The first two days are filled with one-on-one meetings between photographers and arts professionals discussing questions, insights and recommendations for the artist to advance their work or career. It is a great opportunity for photographers to have their work seen by museum curators, publishers, gallerists, and other arts aficionados. I fully enjoy these meetings as I get to meet new artists, see exciting new work and get reacquainted with old friends. I personally met with 24 artists and reviewed over 30 portfolios. And spoiler alert – have offered two of the artists shows at MOAH.
The MEDIUM team filled every minute of this four-day workshop with meaningful activities and experiences. A collaboration with the Museum of Contemporary Art in San Diego produced an open Review where the MEDIUM participants had several hours during the monthly Art Walk to share their portfolios with the public. On Friday evening a keynote lecture from Luis González Palma was flanked by special guest lecturers Mariel Miranda, Louie Palu, Christina Fernandez, Sant Khalsa and Meghann Riepenhoff who shared their professional expertise and vision. On Saturday Sant Khalsa spoke about her book PRANA: Life with Trees, published by MOAH and Griffith Moon, followed by a book signing. The MEDIUM event ended on Sunday after a phenomenal tour of more than a dozen Tijuana artist studios.
Because of the nature of the location, the atmosphere was light, and you could feel the camaraderie in the air. The friendly and relaxed San Diego culture paired with the expert organization of this event inspired this Reviewer to return to the museum – invigorated and brimming with new ideas for exhibitions and experiences to share with our artists, visitors and supporters. Thank you scott b davis and your wonderful team for this annual event and for the important community you have created through this workshop.
Andi Campognone has over 30 years of arts experience in the southern California region. She is the Owner/Director of AC Projects, a private consulting organization focused on promoting arts and culture. Projects include developing museum exhibitions, public engagement, mentoring programs and book and film publications of historically relevant southern California artists. Campognone is also the Museum Manager/Curator for the City of Lancaster. She is responsible for the development and maintenance of partnerships and community engagement initiatives with local artists, local businesses, Los Angeles County Arts Commission, Los Angeles County Supervisors office and higher level institutions. She develops curatorial direction for exhibition programming and educational programming and additionally she is directing the Museum accreditation process for MOAH. She has previously served the City of Pomona as Cultural Arts Commissioner where she co-wrote and implemented the City’s Master Cultural Arts Plan and the adopted Arts in Public Places Policy. She is the cofounder of Kipaipai, a professional development workshop for artists in Hawaii, Ojai and Joshua Tree. Ms. Campognone is on the Board of the Lancaster Museum and Public Art Foundation and on the Board of the Holualoa Foundation for Arts and Culture. She volunteers as a regular speaker and mentor to art students at both the undergraduate and graduate level and is on the advisory board of the Los Angeles Arts Association. She is a current member of ArTTable.
Photos by Andi Campognone
Photos by Kristine Schomaker