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New Art and Design Faculty

Lana Caplan

As we begin the 2016-17 academic year, the Art and Design Department would like to introduce a new addition to our faculty in the photography and video concentration: Lana Z Caplan.

In addition to single-channel films or videos in essay form, video art and performance pieces, Caplan has made experimental documentaries, virtual reality experiences, public art video installations and published photography books. In many of her works, the technology – digitally generated realities, landscape referent projections, historic photo processes, internet images, multi-channel or interactive installations – is used to transform known material into something unfamiliar and tangible reality into virtual reality.

Caplan’s work has been recognized by awards at various exhibitions and festivals, including the Director’s Prize at Black Maria Film Festival and the Audience Award at the Crossroads Film Festival in San Francisco. Other notable exhibition and festival appearances include the Edinburgh International Film Festival, Havana Film Festival, L’Alternativa Independent Film Festival (Barcelona), Anthology Film Archives (New York City), Microscope Gallery (Brooklyn), Inside Out Art Museum (Beijing), National Gallery (San Juan, PR), Experiments in Cinema (Albuquerque), MadCat Women’s International Film Festival (San Francisco) and Museo Tamayo Arte Contemporáneo (Mexico City). 

Caplan’s undergraduate degrees are in Art History and Psychology from Boston University, where she graduated magna cum laude and focused on the history of photography and contemporary art. Her Master of Fine Arts degree is from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design, where she studied photography, new media, film and video. Before coming to Cal Poly, she served on the faculty of several colleges including Massachusetts College of Art and Design and University of California, San Diego. She has received grants from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, the Puffin Foundation and the Film/Video Studio Program Fellowship at the Wexner Center for the Arts in Columbus, Ohio. Her work has been reviewed in various journals and periodicals including ARTnews, The Boston Globe, Hyperallergic, and The New York Sun.

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