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A collaboration between the Getty, 826LA, and Mark Twain Middle School Exhibition co-sponsored by 826LA, SPARC, and the Los Angeles Times Online exhibition sponsored by ARTSEDGE

March 1, 2006

LOS ANGELES—The Community Photoworks project, initiated in 2005 by the J. Paul Getty Museum, will culminate in an exhibition of student work at the SPARC Gallery in Venice, California, from March 8–March 12, 2006. The project, aimed at exposing students in Los Angeles to the art of photography, was launched in conjunction with the recent Getty exhibitions Pictures for the Press and Scene of the Crime: Photo by WeegeeCommunity Photoworks is a collaboration between the J. Paul Getty Museum’s education department, the nonprofit arts and writing center 826LA, and Mark Twain Middle School in Los Angeles.

The exhibition at the SPARC Gallery features the work of 34 seventh-grade honors English students from Mark Twain Middle School, who documented their daily lives and neighborhoods over the 2005 winter holiday and prepared artist’s statements about their work.  The exhibition is co-sponsored by 826LA, SPARC, and the Los Angeles Times, which is supporting the production of a catalogue of the students’ photography and written work for distribution at the exhibition.

There are also plans to simultaneously launch an online exhibition of the student work, sponsored by ARTSEDGE, the National Arts and Education Network, a program of the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C.  This interactive online gallery will include the student-produced images and written work, as well as information on the project and links to individual objects in the Getty’s collection.

Over the course of the Community Photoworks project, the students studied photography, both in class and at the Getty Museum, examining works of art and learning tools to analyze and discuss photography.  The Museum’s photographs exhibitions served as the launching point for in-depth discussion.

Following a series of intensive workshops, the seventh-graders had the opportunity to apply what they learned by using cameras to document their daily activities and scenes from their neighborhoods over the winter holiday.  The program resumed in January 2006 with two in-class workshops, in which the students supplemented their photography by preparing artist's statements about their work.

The Getty Museum’s role in the program included developing lesson plans, providing supplies for the project (including art materials and disposable cameras), subsidizing bus transportation to the Getty Center, training staff members from 826LA and Mark Twain Middle School, and conducting a specially designed photography workshop at the Getty Museum for the participating students.

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Beth Brett
Getty Communications Department

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