New Mexico Museum of Art

The Curve: Center Award Winners, 2011

May 18, 2011

Katherine Ware

The Curve: Center Award Winners, 2011 (Santa Fe, NM—May 18, 2011)—The New Mexico Museum of Art partners this year with Center, Santa Fe’s renowned organization supporting gifted photographers, on an exhibition of photographs by Tamas Dezso and the collaborative team of Michel Palazzi and Alessandro Penso, first-place winners in the 16th Annual Center Awards for Project Competition and Project Launch. The exhibition opens at the New Mexico Museum of Art May 20 and runs through August 7, 2011.

“Working with Center provides the museum an opportunity to share work by talented newcomers from all over the world with our audiences in New Mexico,” said New Mexico Museum of Art Curator of Photography Katherine Ware. “It’s a wonderful chance to see what’s happening in photography internationally in a language we can all appreciate and understand.”

Speaking about Center’s objectives in sponsoring the competition, Executive Director Laura Pressley said, “The Annual Center Awards offer a bird’s-eye view of the current state of contemporary photography and what inspires people from all over the world to make images. Center’s awards honor meaningful stories and bring to light new and effective photographic vocabularies.”

For his series begun in 2009 Here, Anywhere, Tamas Dezso received first place in the Project Competition. Here, Anywhere offers a desolate yet beautiful examination of a post-Communist town in Hungary, his home country—streets and whole districts left behind, frozen in their past, by the country’s decades-long wrenching political transition. Dezso writes about the abandoned structures in this series, “…what remains would either be silently reconquered by nature or enveloped by the lifestyles of tomorrow’s generations.” Dezso’s project was selected by an international trio of jurors: Simon Baker, curator of photography and international art at the Tate Modern in London; Alexa Becker, acquisitions editor at Kehrer Verlag in Heidelberg; and Christina Cahill, deputy director of editorial reportage at Getty Images in New York.

This year’s first-place winners of Center’s Project Launch award are the Italian photographers Michele Palazzi and Alessandro Penso, for their collaborative series Migrant Workers Journey. Selected for the prize by publisher Dewi Lewis, of Dewi Lewis Publishing in England, this body of work addresses the working conditions of migrant agricultural workers harvesting tomatoes in Basilicata, in southern Italy. “A project such as this needs to go beyond the portrayal of the workers simply as victims, it must reveal our common humanity,” Lewis said of his reasons for supporting this ongoing series.

This program is made possible in part by New Mexico Arts, a division of the Department of Cultural Affairs, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Media Contacts:

Katherine Ware, Curator of Photography 505-476-5061  

Laura Pressley, Director, Center 505-984-8353  


The New Mexico Museum of Art was founded in 1917 as the Art Gallery of the Museum of New Mexico. Housed in a spectacular Pueblo Revival building designed by I. H. and William M. Rapp, it was based on their New Mexico building at the Panama-California Exposition (1915). The museum's architecture inaugurated what has come to be known as "Santa Fe Style." For nearly 100 years, the Museum has celebrated the diversity of the visual arts and the legacy of New Mexico as a cultural crossroads by collecting and exhibiting work by leading artists from New Mexico and elsewhere. This tradition continues today with a wide-array of exhibitions with work from the world’s leading artists. The New Mexico Museum of Art brings the art of New Mexico to the world and the art of the world to New Mexico.

The New Mexico Museum of Art is a division of the New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs.

Information for the Public 

Location: Santa Fe’s Plaza at 107 West Palace Avenue.

Information:  505-476-5072 or visit

Days/Times: Tuesday through Sunday, 10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.  Open Free on Fridays, 5:00-8:00 p.m.. Between Memorial Day and Labor Day the Museum is open 7 days a week, including Mondays.

Admission: Adult single-museum admission is $6 for New Mexico residents, $9 for nonresidents; OR $15 for one-day pass to two museums of your choice (Museum of Indian Arts & Culture, Museum of International Folk Art, New Mexico Museum of Art, and Palace of the Governors/New Mexico History Museum) OR $20 four-day pass to the four museums listed above. Youth 16 and under, Foundation Members, and New Mexico Veterans with 50% or more disability always free

Sundays: New Mexico residents with ID are admitted free, Students with ID receive a $1 discount. Wednesdays: New Mexico resident seniors (60+) with ID are free.

Founded in 1994, Center is a nonprofit organization that supports, promotes and provides opportunity to gifted and committed photographers. It is the aim of Center to help photographers identify their creative goals and accomplish them through feedback, support and opportunities. The annual programs include the Project Competition, the Choice Awards, Santa Fe Prize, Excellence in Teaching Award, Review LA, Review Santa Fe and the Center website. Public exhibitions and expositions of the work are held in conjunction with the Awards and Portfolio Reviews. For more information and to view juror’s choice and honorable mention awards, visit

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