The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Curator discusses color in photography

By Mary Nunez/ reporter

Sondra Falcon/The Collegian

The world is dominated and shaped by photographs, a museum curator told a NE audience Feb. 16.

John Rohrbach, senior curator of photographs at the Amon Carter Museum of American Art in Fort Worth, discussed the history of color in photographs and color’s influence on people’s perception of their surroundings.

“We are more like the birds,” he said, “depending and shaping their world, ordering their lives by color.”

Color photographs have the power to change perspectives in every aspect of people’s lives, Rohrbach said.

“It was a hard discussion,” he said. “There was a lot of rejection of color for a range of sometimes bizarre reasons.”

Using a slideshow called “Photography’s Color Problem,” Rohrbach displayed a chronology of color pictures from daguerreotypes in the 19th century to Kodak’s Kodachrome film, the latest development of color in the 21st century.

Describing color photography as “far from a passive media,” Rohrbach used a photograph from The New York Times showing President Donald Trump’s inauguration where he was walking with a triumphant expression out of a door surrounded by red curtains, wearing a red tie, stepping on a blue carpet. He then explained the symbolism behind it.

“The colors are essential, the political brand — Republicans are red, the Democrats are blue,” he said. “What better way to recognize the ascendency of Donald Trump, surrounding him with his party’s color, with his signature red tie, stepping on blue.”

Becky Wilkes, NE photography student, attended the event to learn more from Rohrbach’s work.

“Anytime you can hear somebody that’s got that much experience is just fabulous,” she said.

Some guests outside of NE students and faculty also attended the lecture, including Ann Carol Sewell, a member of the Amon Carter Museum. The event was organized by photography instructor Ting Huang and the photography program.

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