CSUSB’s Khalsa Wins Inaugural Photographic Insight Award

By Staff Reports

(Victor Valley)– – The National Board of the Society for Photographic Education has named Cal State San Bernardino art professor Sant Khalsa as the first recipient of the SPE Insight Award.

This new award was developed by SPE’s National Board of Directors to recognize achievements of significant distinction made by individuals to the field of photographic education. Measured from the inception of careers to the time when standing ovations erupt spontaneously in lecture halls, SPE’s Insight Award symbolizes the realization of a national or international career or the launching of future endeavors to new challenges, ideas and horizons.

Khalsa, who is the chair of CSUSB’s art department, will receive the award at the 49th SPE National Conference, “Intimacy and Voyeurism: The Public/Private Divide in Photography,” to be held March 22-25, 2012, in San Francisco.

“This is an enormous honor and I am frankly stunned,” Khalsa said. “I have been an active member in SPE for 30 years and it has played a significant role in my development as an artist and educator. It has been my pleasure to have served on the board of directors, as a national conference chair, as a speaker and panelist at many regional and national conferences, and in other capacities. I am truly humbled to receive this recognition by my colleagues in the field of photography for doing what I am most passionate about – teaching, advocating and making photographic art as well as serving and supporting my creative community.”

CSUSB art professor Thomas McGovern’s nomination of Khalsa for the award was a testament to the influence and inspiration she has provided throughout her career of teaching, creating art and exhibiting.

“Sant is an outstanding colleague, artist, teacher and mentor and the award reflects her sustained effort over the years to continue serving her students, university, colleagues and creative issues,” said McGovern. “Her artwork reflects her dual roles as an artist and activist and her ability to merge these two roles into a seamless identity is truly impressive.

“I would call her an ‘artist’s artist’ – someone who is respected for her dedication to the very highest level of artwork, regardless of its commercial appeal or if it is in vogue,” he added. “She has a clear, strong vision and the courage to follow it. Those of us lucky enough to know her are inspired by her integrity and dedication.”

Photographers, as well as scholars, curators, writers and visionaries – be their achievements rapid fire or accumulated over time – are eligible for the society’s new mark of recognition and distinction.

Insight Award recipients demonstrate excellence in two or more of the following ways: innovative teaching; sustained mentoring of colleagues or students; broad contribution to technical, critical, pedagogical, or visual aspects of the field; breadth or depth of exhibition or publication; or sustained presence in the field.

The Society for Photographic Education is a nonprofit membership organization that provides and fosters an understanding of photography as a means of diverse creative expression, cultural insight and experimental practice. Through its interdisciplinary programs, services and publications, the society seeks to promote a broader understanding of the medium in all its forms through teaching and learning, scholarship and criticism.

For more information, contact the Cal State San Bernardino Office of Public Affairs at (909) 537-5007 and visit http://news.csusb.edu.

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