Photographer Jimmy Katz will be in residency at Clark University from Tuesday, March 11 through Thursday, March 13 as part of the inaugural Geller Jazz events.
For the past twenty years, Katz’s work for major recording companies (300 recording projects) and jazz magazines (100 covers) gave him unprecedented access to every significant artist in the New York area, where he developed his own personal style, a combination of formal aesthetic and improvisatory camera work. Unique to his style, he has worked with large and medium format film cameras in situations where generations of photographers have relied on smaller formats. The resulting portraits have a remarkable sharp detail and creamy palate while maintaining the spontaneous and intimate quality of working in smaller formats. Herman Leonard called him the best working jazz photographer today and the legendary record producer Michael Cuscuna writes, “His style is as identifiable as Armstrong’s tone on trumpet or Coltrane’s sound on tenor sax.” His photography defines jazz in the modern era.
A selection of fifteen of Katz’s jazz portraits will be on display in the Melville lobby on Wednesday, March 12 before the Geller Jazz concert in honor of Ron Carter, and for two weeks following the opening on the second floor of the Traina Center for the Arts. But Katz is primarily on campus to meet with students. Students will have opportunities to meet him over lunch, and other times to just talk with him individually and in classes — show him their work and ask him what life in Greenwich Village has been like for an artist.
This residency is made possible through the generous support of the Estate of Selma B. Geller.