The Department of Photography and Imaging in the Kanbar Institute of Film and Television at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts has announced the dates for an exhibition of approximately 80 photographic works by 32 photographers examining life on the Gulf Coast before and after hurricane Katrina. The exhibition will open October 10 and remain on view through November 19, 2006.

Entitled Engulfed by Katrina: Photographs Before and After the Storm, the exhibition examines and interprets the experience of the hurricane on the Gulf Coast, specifically in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Texas. It has been curated by Deborah Willis, chair of the Department of Photography and Imaging, and Hank Willis Thomas.

The exhibition will be on view in the Gulf +Western Gallery and in the 8th floor gallery of the Tisch School of the Arts Photography and Imaging Department, located at 721 Broadway (at Waverly Place). Gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays and noon to 5 p.m. Saturdays. The exhibition is open to the public, and admission is free. Photo ID is required when entering the building. For further information, call 212.998.1930, or visit

“On August 29, 2005, Katrina hit the Gulf Coast region of the United States and for the second time in five years the course of the nation was forever changed by one event,” said Professor Willis. “The exhibition explores the devastation of cities within the Gulf Coast, as well as life before and after the storm. In the ensuing months, the American government and its citizens have been forced to face challenging questions about race, class, American ideals, and history. The focus of the show is to fulfill the promise made by everyone almost immediately after the event, which was to not let the horrific impact of this horrific experience be forgotten and overshadowed by more recent headlines or the often trivial concerns of our daily lives (i.e. popular culture, material goods, consumer culture).

“In the days and weeks after the storm, thousands of photographers flocked to the devastated region, often risking their lives and health to bear witness to this calamity. The exhibition will invite viewers to recall their own experience of watching the events unfold on television, and attempt to counter the complacency that has already set in the aftermath of this on-going tragedy. We all know that there is much work to be done, and through their lenses these photographers indict us for our lack of action and apparent compassion fatigue,” Wilis continued.

Photographers whose work is represented in the exhibition are: Marc Asnin, Harold Baquet, Charlene Braud, Keith Calhoun, Gerald Cyrus, D. Michael Cheers, Cheryl Finley, Vangy Franklin, Russell Frederick, Delphine Fawundu-Buford, Lonnie Graham, David Graham, Wyatt Gallery, William Grenier, Jessica Ingram, Chester Higgins Jr., Eric Julien, Melvina Lathan, Sara Macel, Chandra McCormick, John Pinderhughes, Damaso Reyes, Joe Rodriguez, Benjamin Orion Rush, Sophia Schechner, Will Steacy, Frank Stewart, Eric Waters, Lewis Watts, Carla Williams, Clarence Williams, and Nathaniel Ward.

The exhibition is sponsored by the Tisch School of the Arts, Department of Photography & Imaging, and the Nathan Cummings Foundation.

The Department of Photography and Imaging at the Tisch School of the Arts is a four-year B.F.A. program centered on the making and understanding of images. Students explore photo-based imagery as personal and cultural expression. Situated within a university, the program offers students both the intensive focus of an arts curriculum and a serious and broad grounding in the liberal arts. The faculty and staff consist of artists, professional photographers, designers, critics, historians, and scholars working from a wide range of perspectives and media.

Press Contact

Richard Pierce
Richard Pierce
(212) 998-6796