I am a photographer, artist and professor of art. I make photographs, collages, books and boxes. I also do a bit of writing, both personal and professional. I make photographs as a habit and as a meditation, as a centering for myself. My interest in photography was sparked in childhood, when I looked at family albums which contained portraits of my ancestors and saw the resemblance between their younger and older selves. And their resemblance to me, in different ways and combinations, which changes over time.  I am interested in how photographs reflect history – a record of what people looked like, what they wore, and how they presented themselves to the camera, sometimes a century ago. The images are evidence, memories, reminders and remembrances. But ironically (as we look at them) photographs always exist in the present.

I started photographing and printing in the darkroom while a student at Hunter College High School in the late 1960s.  I studied art history in college because I loved looking at art, having grown up in New York City, visiting museums. At age 10, Bruegel’s “Harvesters” at the Metropolitan was a revelation to me. I liked to write, and thought I’d become an art historian or a critic. I studied with several respected art historians at SUNY Stony Brook - Lawrence Alloway, Albert Boime and Nina A. Mallory. It was the early 1970s, the beginning of the women’s liberation movement, and female artists were coming into prominence. For my senior thesis project I produced a book, “Creativity and Women” which combined my writings, photographs and interviews with prominent women artists and writers. 

I spent part of my junior year abroad in Pisa, Italy, where I lived with a local family and took a smattering of classes for credit. I returned to Italy four years later, on a six-week solo trip, to make photographs for my Master’s Thesis at Pratt Institute. It was in graduate school that I understood I was an artist, and a teacher.

At Pratt Institute I was a Teaching Assistant for two photography professors,  Philip Perkis and Bill Gedney. I learned how to make, take, look at and think about photographs, on their own and as related to documentary history and art. One day Bill was absent, and the students turned to me. I immediately felt that was my direction and destiny. 

I began an academic career right out of school, in the Art Department at the University of Texas. I had the daunting honor of following Garry Winogrand’s tenure there, as he was leaving Texas to finish out his life’s work in other places. I was lucky: in the right place at the right time, and naïve enough to think that I had earned it or was prepared for it. Austin was an amazing and vibrant community of artists, and photography was a big part of the scene.

I was younger than some of my students then; now I am older than their parents. I thought I knew everything then; now I know I don't know. What has remained the same through my decades of teaching is a love and enthusiasm for the process, its history and its magic. And for my students. I’m very interested in the give and take of the classroom, the work that is produced with group brainstorming and participation. Teaching others influences my own artistic practice. It encourages me to continue to make my own art, and stay current and present. I am currently an Adjunct Full Professor with tenure at Pratt Institute, and an Adjunct Faculty Member at the School of Visual Arts. 
 

 


EDUCATION

MFA in Photography, Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY, 1978
BA in Art History, SUNY at Stony Brook, NY, 1974
Hunter College High School, 1970

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE

TEACHING
Adjunct Full Professor, Pratt Institute Brooklyn, NY, 2002 - present
Adjunct Photography Professor, School of Visual Arts, NYC, 1986 - present
Handmade Book Workshop, MPS Digital Program, School of Visual Arts 2010 - present
Assistant Professor, University of Texas Art Department, 1978 - 1985
Teaching Assistant, Art History, Pratt Institute 1978

ARTIST RESIDENCIES
Artist-in-Residence, Brookhaven College, Farmer’s Branch, TX May 2016
- Taught handmade book workshops to art students
Artist-in-Residence, Carter Burden Network- Covello Center for the Aging, East Harlem, May-June 2014 and April-May 2015
- Made art/collages in studio; photographed people and events
Hospital Artist-in-Residence, The Creative Center NYC 2003 -2006
- Made art with oncology patients at Englewood Hospital, NJ

PHOTO/BOOK REVIEWER
Photo Reviewer (anonymously) Lensculture.com, 2016 – present
Portfolio Reviewer, APA/NY, 2014 - present
Contributing Writer, AmericanSuburbX  2014 - 2015
Book Reviewer, Fraction Magazine 2009 – present

ARCHIVES & MUSEUMS
Photo Archivist, NYC Department of Parks & Recreation, 1988 - 1990
Photo Archivist, Museum of the City of New York, 1986 – 1988

PHOTOGRAPHY
Freelance Photographer, 1977 - present
Photographer, Sharir Dance Company, Austin, Texas 1982 - 1983
Part-time Assistant to W. Eugene Smith, Photographer, New York, NY, 1977

VOLUNTEER EXPERIENCE
Hospice Volunteer, Jacob Perlow Hospice, NYC 2001-2005

CURATORIAL EXPERIENCE
2016 | 
Ken Castaneda: Photographs, SVA Student Gallery
2015 | NASAD Exhibition, Pratt Institute Photography Department, Brooklyn NY
2014 “Portraiture in the 21st Century” Ochosi Editions, Benedictine University, Illinois
2014 | “Brighton Beach Pictured”, Brighton Beach BID, Brooklyn NY
2013 | “Baked, Boiled & Fried” photos by Emily Larsen, SVA Student Gallery
2012 | “Tahata” SCAD (Savannah College of Art & Design) MFA show and book
2010 | “Together Yet A Part” photos by Patricia Voulgaris, SVA Student Gallery
“The Cherry Project” photos by B-Rad Izzy, SVA Student Gallery
2009 | “Ties” photographs by Stephen Pacuk, SVA Student Gallery
2006 | “Black & White Delight” (4 students) SVA Student Gallery
2004 | “Photo Bookworks – A Selection” Visual Arts Gallery, Chelsea NYC
1990 | “Picturing Brooklyn” photos from the NYC Parks Dept. Archive, Boathouse Gallery, Prospect Park
1989 | “Winners” hand-colored photos from the NYC Parks Dept Archive- Arsenal Gallery NYC and The Boathouse, Central Park
1988 | “Now & Then: Camera Club of New York” City Gallery, NYC
1984 | “Selected Portfolios” Texas Photographic Society, Austin Texas
1983 | “Looking Inward: Photographers Photograph Themselves” Photowork gallery Austin Texas
1977 | “The Nude” Pratt Institute Gallery, Brooklyn, NY

HONORS & AWARDS

Faculty Development Awards, Pratt Institute, 2006, 2011 & 2015
Nominated for Santa Fe Prize in Photography, 2011
Photolucida/Critical Mass Finalist, 2009 & 2013
Publishing Grant for “Respecting My Elders”, UnitedStatesArtists.com
NYFA (New York Foundation for the Arts)
Photography Fellow 2008
Finalist, Alfred Eisenstaedt Awards
for Magazine Photography, 2000
Visiting Artist, Ellis Island Project, Montclair State College, NJ, 1988
Women Studio Workshop grant (to publish artist book) 1986
Innovative Teaching Grants, University of Texas at Austin, 1982-83
Ford Foundation Grant, University of Texas at Austin, 1981
Pratt Institute Fellowship, 1976
Bio listed in “Who’s Who in American Art”

INTERVIEWS & ARTICLES

EXHIBITIONS

SOLO EXHIBITIONS
2017 |
"East Harlem Diptychs" Carter Burden gallery NYC
2015 |
“Respecting My Elders” Weill Gallery, 92nd Street, NYC
“Women in Art History” collages, Carter Burden Gallery, Chelsea NYC
2014 |
20 Collages from “Women in Art History” Leonard Covello Center, East Harlem
2013 |
“Respecting My Elders”, National Arts Club, NYC (slide lecture)
2012 |
“Ellen Wallenstein Portraits”, Penumbra Foundation NYC
2011 |
“Respecting My Elders”, Pictorial Photographers of America (slides/lecture)
2009 |
“Opus for Anne, A Still Life”, Professional Women Photographers, NYC and Camera Club of New York/School of Visual Arts
2007 |
“Opus for Anne” A Still Life”, Abrons Arts Center, Henry Street Settlement, NYC
2006 |
“Director’s Cut”, Aperture Foundation Online Gallery
2005 |
“Opus: Anne’s Windows”, Creative Center Gallery, Chelsea, NYC
1989 |
“Winners”- hand-colored photos from the NYC Parks Archive, Arsenal Gallery,  NYC
“Dream Images”, Camera Club of New York, NYC
1984 |
“Wedding Photographs”, Alcove Gallery, Laguna Gloria Art Museum, Austin, TX
1983 |
“Dance Photographs”, Houston Jewish Center & Accent Photo Gallery, Austin TX
1981 |
“Children & Other Fantasies”, Transact Theater, Austin, Texas
1980 |
“Ellen Wallenstein - Photographs”, Alma Thomas Fine Arts Center, Southwestern University, Georgetown,TX

SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS
2017 |

Summer in the City, Carter Burden Gallery, NYC
Portfolios: http://www.lightleaked.com/ellen-wallenstein-portfolio.html
2015 |
“What Is A Portrait”, Ripe Gallery, Huntington NY
2 x 6 x 17 Drawing Show, Carter Burden Gallery, Chelsea NYC
Ellen Walllenstein & Jerry Vezzuso, Collages & Drawings, Covello Center
12 x 12 Group Show, Carter Burden Gallery NY
2014 |
“What You See Is What You Get”, Carter Burden Gallery, Chelsea NYC
2012-13 |
“An Inventory of Al Mutanabbi Street”, Baghdad Museum, Iraq & international venues, Center for Book Arts NYC and Columbia University Library
2011 |
”The Photograph Un/Framed” Center for Book Arts, NYC
“Crossing Disciplines: Books” Schaefler Gallery, Pratt Institute, Brooklyn NY
2009 |
“Artseen” Frederick Petzel Gallery, NYC
2008 |
“Reunion”: Work by Pratt Alumni, Steuben Gallery, Brooklyn, NY
2006 |
“Bienal di Arte Contemporaneo”, Circulo de Bellas Artes de Madrid, Spain
“The Artist & The Book” Pelham Arts Center, Pelham, NY
2005 |
“Women of the Book” U. of Miami; Rutgers University, Camden NJ
2004 |
“SVA Photo Bookworks- A Selection 2002-4”, Visual Arts Gallery, NYC
2003 |
“Dreams & Nightmares”, Alison Palmer Gallery, Bantam, CT
“DivRcity” Barbara Ann Levy Gallery, NYC
2002 |
“Soho Photo Auction”, Buhl Foundation Benefit show, NYC
“My Life, My City”,  (Kiboko Workshop shows) NYC & St. Petersburg, Russia
2000 |
Group Show, Barbara Ann Levy Gallery, Cherry Grove, Fire Island NY
1998 |
“Women of the Book”, traveling Nationally/Internationally thru 2005
1996 |
“Mysterious Worlds”, Center for Book Arts, NYC
1990 |
“Visiting Photographers Exhibition”, Ellis Island Museum, NYC
1989 |
“Selected Photographs”, The Brooklyn Museum, NY
“24 Exposures”, Union Square Gallery, NYC
“Signatures: Bookworks by Women”, Center for Book Arts, NYC
1988 |
“Fun & Games”, Center for Book Arts, NYC
1987 |
“Visions: New Photography”, Puchong Gallery, NYC
“Homage to Man Ray”, Puchong Gallery, NYC
“Visions of Eros”, Philip Stansbury Gallery, NYC
1986 |
“New American Talent” Laguna Gloria Art Museum, Austin, TX
“Ten Texas Photographers” Abilene Fine Arts Center, TX
“National Exhibition of Handmade Books” TX Women’s Univ., Denton, TX
1985 |
“Contemporary Photoworks” Albuquerque, NM
“Light Sensitive IV” University of Florida, Gainesville, FLA.
“Architectural Elements: Clay & Silver” Ohio State University, OH
1984 |
“Texas Women Photographers”, Canon Gallery, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
1983 |
“Looking Inward: Photographers Photograph Themselves”, Photowork Gallery, Austin TX
1982 |
“Ten Women: Ten Artists” Diseno Gallery, Austin TX
“Three Photographers: The Human Presence”, Waco Art Center, Waco TX
1980 |
“4th Annual Small Works Show” New York University, NY
1978 |
“Works on Paper, Southwest”, Dallas Museum of Fine Arts, TX
1977 |
“The Nude” Pratt Institute Gallery, Brooklyn, NY

BOOK ARTS EXHIBITIONS
2014 |
“In Focus” Juried Exhibit of Self-Published Photo Books, Phoenix Art Museum
2013 |
“Photobook 2013” Davis-Orton Gallery, Hudson, NY (Best of Show)
“Al Mutanabbi Street Starts Here”, Butler Library, Columbia University and Center for Book Arts, NYC
2012-13 |
“An Inventory of Al Mutanabbi Street”, Baghdad Museum, Iraq & international venues, Center for Book Arts NYC
2012 |
“500 Handmade Books” Volume 2, Lark Publishers
2011 |
“Crossing Disciplines: Books” Pratt Institute, Schaefler Gallery, Brooklyn
“The Photograph Un/Framed” Center for Book Arts, NYC
2009 |
“A Book About Death” Emily Harvey Foundation NYC;
2007 |
“Opus for Anne” books & photos, Abrons Arts Center, Henry Street Settlement, NYC
2006 |
“The Artist and the Book” Pelham Art Center, NY
2005 |
“Broadsides” 30thAnniversary Members Exhibition, Center for Book Arts;
2004 |
“SVA PhotoBookWorks- A Selection 2002-04” Visual Arts Gallery NYC
2003 |
“Selected Works” Womens Studio Workshop, SUNY Westchester Art Gallery, NY
2002 |
“My Life, My City” (Kiboko Workshop) NYC & St. Petersberg, Russia;
1998-05 |
“Women of the Book: Jewish Artists, Jewish Themes”(International travelling exhibition curated by Judith Hoffberg)
1996 |
“Mysterious Worlds” Center for Book Arts, NYC
1995 |
“Women’s Work: An Open Book” Harpercollins Exhibition Space, NYC;
1994 |
“Women’s Studio Workshop: XX Years” SUNY New Paltz NY
1993 |
“Seven Deadly Sins” Center for Book Arts NYC
1991-5 |
“Photographic Book Art in the United States” (travelling show)
1989 |
“Signatures: Bookworks by Women” Center for Book Arts NYC
1987 |
“Fun &Games” Center for Book Arts NYC
1986 |
“National Exhibition of Handmade Books” TWU, Denton, TX.

PUBLISHED BOOKS & WRITINGS

PUBLISHED BOOKS
2017 |

East Harlem Diptychs
NYC Squares: On the Street, from the Car & Underground
Street Scenes / NYC Squares, Museums & History
2016 |
“East Harlem, Spring
2013 |
“Respecting My Elders”, portraits
2009 |
“Dead Men Circa 1881”, Blurb books
2008 |
“Pocketbook of Drag Queens”, Blurb books
1986 |
“A Game of Chess”, Women’s Studio Workshop

PUBLISHED WRITINGS
“i” by Eamonn Doyle, book review AmericanSuburbX
“Up Close & Personal” exhibition review, AmericanSuburbX
“Land Line” by Michael Schmellling, book review AmericanSuburbX
“Disquiet” by Amani Willet, book review Fraction Magazine online
“My Dakota” by Rebecca Norris Webb, book review, Fraction Magazine online
“The Bridge at Hoover Dam by Jamey Stillings”, book review, Fraction Magazine online
PDNedu Spring 2013 Generosity, Mentoring and Support: Tierney Family Foundation Assists Young Photographers with a Global Reach
Both Fall 2011 PDNedu and PDNedu.com: “Project X” Photographic Growth Spurt “(2 Boston high schools)
“A Taste for Images” (SVA Class with W.m. Hunt and A. Brez
“One To Nothing” by Irina Rozovsky book review Fraction Magazine online Issue 30
“Regeneration2: Tomorrows Photographers Today” Fraction Magazine online Issue 21
“The Black Eye” photographs by Michal Chelbin, Fraction Magazine online Issue 18
“Danny Lyon - Photographs 1962 - 1987”, feature, Afterimage, Vol 15 No 8 March 1988
“Vanity Fair”, book review,  Feine Leute, 111 Photographien der Jahre 1979 bis 1985 by Herlinde Koebl,  Afterimage, Vol 14 No 5 Dec 1986 pp 19-20
“Larry Clark - Outlaw No More”, feature, review of Teenage Lust and interview Spot, Houston Center for Photography, Vol 3 No 3 Fall 1984 pp14-17
“Shutter Satires”- review of Hollis Frampton exhibit, Austin American-Statesman, SecG p3 8/8/85
“Fritz Henle’s Perspective” New York Photo District News, May 1985
“Focus: Austin”  - feature, New York Photo District News, Vol 4 No 2 Nov 1984
“The Writer’s Image, Literary portraits” by Jill Krementz, book review, Photoletter, Vol 5 No 1 Spring 1984
“Energy, Impulse & Yacov Sharir”, feature & photographs, Third Coast Magazine Vol 2  March 1983
“The Ties that Bind” photography review, Artweek, Vol 12 No 41, pp 11-12, Dec 1981  

COLLECTIONS

Austin History Center, Austin, TX
The Brooklyn Museum, NY
Center for Creative Photography, W.E. Smith Collection; Tucson, AZ
Ellis Island Museum, NY
Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, FLA.
Humanities Research Center, University of Texas at Austin
Museum of the City of New York, NY
Performing Arts Library, Lincoln Center, NY
Pfizer, Inc. Art Collection, NYC
Russell Lee Collection, Southwest Texas State University, San Marcos TX
Southwestern University, Georgetown, TX
Private Collections


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