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Interim Report:
Directions in Post Graduate Work/Art/Life

Presentation by Elisabeth Biondi
with panelists Jan Cieślikiewicz, Daniel Johnson,
Judith Stenneken, & Amani Willett

Thursday, April 10, 2014, 7pm
The School of Visual Arts Amphitheater
209 East 23rd Street (betw 2nd/3rd Ave), Third Floor
(please bring photo ID for building entry)

Q & A to follow the discussion.

Free to CCNY members, SVA students, faculty, and staff
$5 general admission, $3 for other students with ID


Visuals editor and curator Elisabeth Biondi will introduce a panel made up of four recently-graduated photography/video artists – Jan Cieślikiewicz, Daniel Johnson, Judith Stenneken, and Amani Willett – who will share their work and their experiences in the immediate aftermath of leaving school. The presentation will be followed by a discussion with the artists about their work in post graduation life.


About the Artists & Presenter

Jan Cieślikiewicz is a New York-based photographer from Poland. A recent graduate from the General Studies program at International Center of Photography, he also holds a degree in Applied Mathematics from Harvard University and was a Polish national swimming champion. He spent six years working as a trader on Wall Street and then quit his job to travel and pursue his passion—photography. Visit his website at

Daniel Johnson is an artist who creates work that is developed from his interest in authorship, representation, technology, and popular culture. Born and raised in Delaware, he was an English instructor for several years before moving to New York to pursue an education in art. He is now a graduate of the School of Visual Arts where he earned an MFA studying photography, video, and related media. He also holds an MA in English and a BA in psychology and English. Having taught students from diverse backgrounds and age groups, he is passionate about education and strives to share the importance of creating and questioning. He is driven by curiosity and an urge to fill in the gaps in conversations about contemporary art by engaging viewers with conceptual works about blackness, being, and the nature of the mediums with which he works. His website is

Judith Stenneken was born in Germany in 1979. Although originally from the mid-western part of the country, she calls the north of Germany her home, where her family moved when she was eleven years old. Growing up as a teenager in a small village surrounded by the Baltic Sea and the North Sea and the flat vast landscapes of the north, Stenneken moved to Hamburg after finishing school (Abitur). For a couple of years she worked in advertising (mainly in TV-commercial production companies) and took evening classes to study marketing and communication. In 2006 she decided to follow her passion and moved to Berlin to study photography at the Ostkreuzschule. Stenneken’s final work at that school LAST CALL | Tempelhof Central Airport won the Grand Prize of Blurb’s Photography Book Now contest in 2010. After a short stay in London for half a year, she moved to New York in 2011 to earn her Masters in Photography, Video, and Related Media at the School of Visual Arts, graduating in May 2013. Visit her website at

Amani Willett is a Brooklyn-based photographer. In the spring of 2013, his first monograph, Disquiet, was published by Damiani. He was recently featured in the books Street Photography Now (Thames and Hudson) and New York: In Color (Abrams). Willett’s pictures have been exhibited widely, including at the Howard Greenberg Gallery. His work has been featured in such publications as American Photography, Photo District News, Newsweek and The New York Times. His lectures include the International Center of Photography and the Philadelphia Photo Arts Center. Willett received his MFA in Photography, Video, and Related Media from the School of Visual Arts. His website is

After fifteen years as the Visuals Editor of The New Yorker Elisabeth Biondi left the publication in Spring 2011, to work as an Independent Curator. So far she has curated Subjective/Objective and Under the Bridge for the NY PhotoFestival 2011 and New Yorker Fiction/ Real Photography at the Steven Kasher Gallery in Chelsea. In fall 2011 her exhibition Beyond Words: Photography in The New Yorker was the season’s opening show at the Howard Greenberg Gallery. It has been expanded and traveled to the Ullens Center in Beijing. Her exhibition Widely Different: New York City Panoramas was on view at the Seaport Museum in New York, and Three was on view at Hagedorn Foundation Gallery in Atlanta in 2014.

She is a Senior Thesis Adviser for SVA Graduate School and was a photography consultant for Stern magazine. Her column ‘Portfolio’ is published in each issue of Photograph Magazine. Most recently she was a juror for the World Press Photography Awards in Amsterdam and the Sony World Photography Awards in London, the in addition to numerous national and international photography juries and portfolio reviews.

Ms. Biondi joined the staff of The New Yorker in 1996, shortly after photography was introduced to the magazine and as it began to play a more prominent editorial role. As Visuals Editor she has helped shape the look of the publication by establishing a group of staff photographers, commissioning both masters and emerging talent, and utilizing portrait, fine art, historical, and documentary photography. She built the magazine’s reputation for its use of photography, which is much acclaimed and has received numerous awards, including two National Magazine Awards.

Born and educated in Germany, Ms. Biondi started working with photography when Geo Magazine, often described as a more contemporary and controversial version of National Geographic, made its appearance on the American market. Although the magazine won many awards for its photography and design, it ultimately ceased publication in 1984.

Subsequently, she moved to Vanity Fair, which soon began to grow into the highly successful magazine it is today. As Director of Photography, she focused on lively, witty portraiture – an important contribution to the increased success of the publication.

After seven years at Vanity Fair, Ms. Biondi returned to Germany to work for Stern, one of Germany’s largest newsweeklies. As head of the Photography Department, she explored the fast-paced world of news and reportage photography, and worked with photographers around the world. After five years, she returned to New York, where she worked as Visuals Editor of The New Yorker until 2011.



September 19, 2013 – Joshua and Zakary Sandler
October 17, 2013 – Ron Jude
November 14, 2013 – Gerard H. Gaskin
December 12, 2013 – Anna Shteynshleyger
January 16, 2014 – Sharon Core
February 20, 2014 – Dan Torop
March 20, 2014 – Victoria Sambunaris
April 10, 2014 – Interim Report: Directions in Post Graduate Work/Art/Life with Elisabeth Biondi & panelists


The CCNY Lecture Series is presented in conjunction with the SVA BFA Photography Department.

CCNY‘s lectures are supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council.

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Judith Stenneken
Judith Stenneken

Jan Cieślikiewicz
Jan Cieślikiewicz

Daniel Johnson
Daniel Johnson

Amani Willett
Amani Willett