Alison Rossiter. Photo: Michelle Kloehn.

Alison Rossiter Wins Shpilman Photography Prize

The 2018 Shpilman International Prize for Excellence in Photography has been awarded to American artist Alison Rossiter. Established by the Shpilman family and the Israel Museum in Jerusalem in 2010, the $40,000 biennial award recognizes contemporary photographers who are working on projects relating to the human condition. This year’s prize focuses on the idea of “The Last Photograph” and the evolving role of cameras as information transmitters in the virtual age.

Rossiter was born in Jackson, Mississippi, in 1953 and lives and works in New York. She received her training in photography and served as a photography conservator before beginning to make cameraless photo prints in the late 1990s. Her practice focuses on experimenting with expired photographic paper to create minimalist, abstract images. The jury noted Rossiter’s “originality and candor in both artistic practice and conceptual framework; her ability to find a new place for analog image-making in our digital era; her critical thinking about the material history of the photographic medium as an alternative global history; her commitment to the dire questions of the conditions of photography and its physical relation to the human body; and her uncompromising aesthetics, building a remarkably rich and continually evolving syntax within a few rigid coordinates.”

This year’s jury comprised Celina Lunsford, artistic director of Fotografie Forum, Frankfurt; Karolina Lewandowska, photography curator at the Centre Pompidou, Paris; Falma Fshazi, former general director of COD Art Center, Tirana, Albania; Vardit Gross, director of ArtPort Residency Program, Tel Aviv; and Noam Gal, curator and head of the photography department at the Israel Museum, Jerusalem. Rafał Milach (Poland), Noémie Goudal (France), Dor Guez (Israel), and Ivan Boccara (Morocco) were given honorary mentions.