Since 1987, the Photographic Resource Center has been privileged to organize and present the Leopold Godowsky, Jr. Color Photography Awards. The awards honor Leopold Godowsky, Jr., the co-inventor of Kodachrome film, and a man whose contributions have had a major and lasting impact on the medium of photography. The awards were made possible through the generosity of his late wife, Frances Gershwin Godowsky, in counsel with her son, Leopold Godowsky III. Over the course of 6 award cycles—with the first presented in 1988, and the most recent in 2005—the awards have bolstered the careers of some 28 individual artists representing over 18 countries on 7 continents.
Traditionally rotating throughout different regions of the world, the theme of the 2005 Leopold Godowsky, Jr. Color Photography Awardswidens to a truly international scope. To further strengthen and expand upon this motif—reflective in part of the changed global and photographic communities in which we live—the PRC sought this year to honor outstanding artists with recent significant, but as yet unexplored, bodies of work in color photography, regardless of where they live or work. By acknowledging such international photographic talent, we hope to bring to light issues important to individual photographers as well as to the global community, and also introduce these photographers and their work to this region.
For this year’s awards, the PRC sought nominations from international directors, curators, critics, and authors in the photographic and contemporary art communities. From these nominations, nearly 60 artists submitted work for a final jury. Jurors for the 2005 Leopold Godowsky, Jr. Color Photography Awards were Karen Irvine, Curator, The Museum of Contemporary Photography (Chicago) and Brian Wallis, Director of Exhibitions and Chief Curator, International Center of Photography (New York), along with Leslie K. Brown, PRC Curator (Boston). The awards were granted based on the sole criterion of excellence, as represented by a portfolio of color images, produced using any photographic method, within the previous two years. Significantly, this year, most of the winning bodies of work are being shown for the first time in the US.
Recently, it seems that color has become the “medium” of the moment. A new color canon, which is distinctly international, is emerging. In addition to honoring the current recipients, it is one of the goals of this 2005 cycle to pay homage to the seminal histories of the Leopold Godowsky, Jr. Color Photography Awards, Leopold Godowsky, Jr., and Kodachrome films. Concomitantly, on display in the gallery are Kodachrome-related ephemera, a timeline of color photography, a history of the awards, and publications. Additionally, a new online archive (www.bu.edu/prc/godowsky. htm) more fully showcases current and past award winners, images, and related information. >>>