George Eastman Museum logoRochester, N.Y. (February 29, 2024)—The George Eastman Museum continues its 75th anniversary celebration with the opening of the exhibition New Directions: Recent Acquisitions on Saturday, March 16 in the Project Gallery. New Directions features work acquired by the museum over the past five years, and showcases significant developments in photographic practice.

Throughout New Directions, the photographic image figures as a tool to fortify—but also unsettle—ideas about history and identity. Major themes in the exhibition examine the power of archives, digital image culture, the social structures of race and gender, and the landscape as a repository for history. While some of the artists embrace photography as a documentary medium, others develop strategies to destabilize the authority of the image. The many tactics on view include appropriation, abstraction, performance, montage, serialization, and other creative and conceptual interventions.

Alongside photographs made in the past decade, the exhibition includes works by artists who were often overlooked or marginalized in the past, but whose contributions are touchstones for contemporary art.

New Directions also features a selection of photobooks from the museum’s Richard and Ronay Menschel Library. The featured publications take many forms, from traditionally bound pages to more sculptural or even puzzle-like constructions.

Photographers and artists in the exhibition include An-My Lê, Annie Hsiao-Ching Wang, Baldwin Lee, Eileen Quinlan, Erica Baum, Ilse Cardoen, Janice Guy, Joan Lyons, Justine Kurland, Keith Smith, Ken Gonzales-Day, Lola Flash, Meghann Riepenhoff, Sophie Calle, and Zanele Muholi. The exhibition is curated by Phil Taylor and Louis Chavez, Department of Photography.

The exhibition title echoes New Acquisitions/New Directions/New Work, 1981–1989, which was on display for the museum’s 40th anniversary. 

Admission to New Directions: Recent Acquisitions is free with regular museum admission.


Wish You Were Here: Baldwin Lee: Looking is Harder than it Looks
Thursday, April 11, 6 p.m.
Dryden Theatre

A first-generation Chinese American, Baldwin Lee is a photographer and educator known for his photographs of Black communities of the American South. Founder of the University of Tennessee’s photography program in the early 1980s, Lee is currently a professor emeritus at the institution.

Tickets are $10 for non-members, and free for George Eastman Museum members and students with a valid ID. Visit for more information and to register for the event.

About the George Eastman Museum
Founded in 1947, the George Eastman Museum is the world’s oldest photography museum and one of the largest film archives in the United States, located on the historic Rochester estate of entrepreneur and philanthropist George Eastman, the pioneer of popular photography. Its holdings comprise more than 400,000 photographs, 41,000 motion picture films, the world’s preeminent collection of photographic and cinematographic technology, one of the leading libraries of books related to photography and cinema, and extensive holdings of documents and other objects related to George Eastman. As a research and teaching institution, the Eastman Museum has an active publishing program and, its L. Jeffrey Selznick School of Film Preservation’s graduate program (a collaboration with the University of Rochester) makes critical contributions to film preservation. For more information, visit and follow the George Eastman Museum account on Facebook, as well as the @eastmanmuseum accounts on Instagram, TikTok, and Threads.

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Promotional Images for New Directions: Recent Acquisitions are available to download:

Media Contact: Nate Smith
(585) 327-4813