the literate lens

photography, writing and the spaces between

Saul Leiter in London

Saul Leiter would have hated this article. Before reading a word of it, he would have deemed it “too much.” In the first essay in Saul Leiter, a new monograph that accompanies … Continue reading

March 11, 2016 · 10 Comments

Mission Total Immersion: Laura Poitras at the Whitney

Would you like your art with a side of politics, or your politics with a side of art? You don’t really have to choose at Astro Noise, a new exhibition … Continue reading

February 22, 2016 · 3 Comments

Heart of the Matter: An interview with Glenna Gordon

In northern Nigeria, being female can sometimes be a risky proposition. In this patriarchal, Muslim-dominated society, one of the better options for a girl is to enter into an arranged … Continue reading

February 11, 2016 · 6 Comments

The Power of Visual Storytelling: An Interview with Mark Tuschman

In the history of social advocacy, photography has played a key role. It makes sense: a compelling photograph has a visceral impact that goes beyond words. Lewis Hine’s photographs of child … Continue reading

December 3, 2015 · 10 Comments

A Lesbian Gun: Words and Images Inspire Todd Hayne’s New Masterpiece ‘Carol’

In writing and film, storytelling is often a dance between the narrative and the visual. Fiction writers use vivid descriptions to help readers visualize a story’s world, while a film’s visuals often … Continue reading

November 20, 2015 · 2 Comments

Turning the Tables: An Interview with Sarah Coleman

Earlier this year, I was interviewed by Mark Jenkinson for his book Photography Careers: Finding Your True Path, which is coming out soon from Focal Press (just in time for you … Continue reading

November 11, 2015 · 8 Comments

Responding to August Sander… in Poetry

Stalwart, pensive, anonymous: the people in August Sander’s portraits are identified only by their jobs or social classes. A bricklayer; young farmers; a professional middle-class couple. Look past the titles, though, … Continue reading

October 26, 2015 · 19 Comments