Amy Blakemore

Artadia Awardee

Amy Blakemore received a BS in Psychology (1980) and a BA in Art (1982) from Drury College (now Drury University), Springfield, MO, and an MFA from the University of Texas at Austin in 1985. From 1985-87 Amy Blakemore was an artist resident at the Core Program, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, TX. She has exhibited her photographs throughout Texas and internationally for the past thirty years, including participating in the 2006 Whitney Biennial, Day for Night, curated by Chrissie Iles and Philippe Vergne, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY, and solo presentations at James Harris Gallery, Seattle, WA (2010), and the 2005 Pingyao International Festival for Photography in Pingyao, China. A twenty-year retrospective of her work, Amy Blakemore Photographs 1988-2008, was organized by Alison de Lima Greene at the MFAH (2009), and traveled to the Seattle Art Museum (2010) and the Oklahoma City Museum of Art (2011). Most recently, she was the subject of two survey exhibitions: I’m Not Tellin’ at the Art League Houston (2015) and Right Here, Right Now at the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston (2016), and a two person exhibition including recent work at the Museum der bildenden Künste Leipzig (2018). Blakemore lives and works in Houston, TX, where she is head of the Photography department at the Glassell School, MFAH.

Amy Blakemore’s (born 1958, Tulsa, OK) photographs capture quotidian moments of interest that appear to have been seen in peripheral vision. Her career-long exploration of genres–portraiture, landscape, and still life–combined with the particular atmosphere she is able to create, have resulted in a remarkable body of work. Early in her career, Blakemore dedicated herself to shooting with a Diana camera. The Diana, a cult favorite that appeared in the United States in the early 1960s, is a box camera with a plastic body and a simple plastic lens that creates ethereal and unpredictable images. Blakemore’s embrace of the Diana’s unpredictability is balanced by her precision in the darkroom. In an age when most photographers have embraced digital technologies, Blakemore continues to print all of her work in the darkroom.