The University Student Show: Photography in the Time of Covid was curated by Fiona Bauman, who is herself a student at the Tyler School of Art at Temple University. The show features work by 55 university students from over a dozen schools with three winners judged by The Photo Review. We recently sat down with Fiona to discuss her curation process and reflections on the show now that it is on the walls.
Could you tell us a bit about yourself?
I’m Fiona! I’ve been working at PhotoLounge for over a year now, and I’m about to graduate from Tyler School of Art at Temple University with a degree in Photography.
What has it been like being a student during Covid?
Not amazing, but it has definitely made me much more appreciative of in-person learning and how much more we benefit from working with others.
How would you summarize your vision for this show?
Students had to get creative in new ways to make the best of things during Covid, and I think some really uniquely cool work has come out of that situation that deserves to be highlighted.
What are some of your favorite photos from the show?
Untitled by Heather Palmer is one of my favorites in the show. It encapsulates the feeling that a lot of us had in lockdown of being stuck inside but trying to look at our same old surroundings in a new way. I also really loved the taxidermy photos by Alayna Vance. Two of their photos are in the show, but Diamond Tooth is my favorite. It’s just so fun and weird and completely unexpected.
Although this show is vast in scope, are there some common themes that run throughout it?
Not surprisingly, there is definitely a sense of loneliness in the show – but there is a lot of beauty inside of that loneliness! Even in tough situations people still want to learn, and still want to be creative, and still want to find meaningful ways to connect with others. So while a lot of the photos may seem dark, it all adds up to this big, beautiful, and joyful collection of art in the end, and that’s really special.
What do you hope people take away from the show?
People will always persevere, and I think it will be impossible to come away from this show not being reminded of that.
The show is already up and you can view it at the PL130 Gallery inside PhotoLounge through April 24th. But don’t forget to come out to our Student Open House this Friday evening from 6-9 pm! To celebrate the opening of the show we will be hosting an open house where meet the exhibitors and faculty, show your support, listen to live music by Lena Fine, you will get to meet the Halide Project, The Photo Review, and Lot 49 Books, learn about the Film Club and how it sponsors the gallery and saves on processing, tour the historic Frank Furness building and labs, save on student prints, and get new merch from PhotoLounge!