James Gehrt is a fine art photographer and imaging specialist residing in Western Massachusetts. After receiving his BFA in photography from the Savannah College of Art and Design in 1991, his career began by assisting and printing for commercial and fine art photographers.
Gehrt established a reputation for excellent print quality and technical proficiency which lead him to the position as the Lab Manager at the Chicago Albumen Works, in Housatonic Massachusetts. While at CAW for Seven years, he had the opportunity to work with negatives from some of photography's most important creators, including Walker Evans, Carlton Watkins, and Lazlo Maholy Nagy. He also worked with collections from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the National Archives, The Philadelphia Museum of Art, The Museum of the City of New York, and the Met Opera.
In 2007 Gehrt began as the Digitization Coordinator at the Mount Holyoke College Library. He has been awarded a 2009 and 2010 NITLE Technology Fellow, concentrating on new digitization technologies. His workshops in digitization best practices have been taught at the New England Archivists annual conference, Simmons College Continuing Education, NITLE, and the METRO Library Group in New York City. In 2014, Gehrt received his MLIS from Simmons College. He was honored with the Dr. Esstelle Jussim award in Photographic Studies. Gehrt was promoted to Digital Project Lead at Mount Holyoke in 2015. He is currently teaching Photographic Archives LIS471 at Simmons College in Boston.
Through it all Gehrt continues to carry a camera with him wherever he goes. Building a collection of thousands of images from everyday life that document the objects and locations he visits. Gehrt has produced seven self-published titles over the past eight years. This past summer his book "Source" was acquired by the Smith College, Mortimer Rare Book Room. He has exhibited his work in group and solo shows, and in the Fall of 2016 he produced a multi-media exhibition based on his latest work, entitled "The Weight of Air", at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Hampden Gallery.
Master of Library and Information Science
Dr. Estelle Jussim award in Photographic Studies, Simmons College, 2015
Simmons College Graduate School Symposium, April 2013. “The eBook and print on demand publishing in the library, archive, and museum.”
1990 Rousakis Overseas Studies Scholarship, France
Studied under Craig Stevens, Jean Pierre Sudre, and Lucien Clergue
Digital Projects Lead, Digitization Coordinator, Digital Assets and Preservation Services (September 2006-present)
High-level oversight of operational aspects of digitization projects, digital collections development, and digital asset management
Hire, manage, lead, and support a team of student assistants and graduate student interns
Create, update, and make accessible project planning documents, to insure knowledge transparency across the department
Utilize an agile project management approach to ensure that project progress is tracked and deadlines are met
Support metadata creation and migration, ingest of content to digital repository systems.
Digital project consulting and outreach for faculty research and digital scholarship.
Imaging for book publishing
Imaging for 3D printing
In class demonstrations and workshops
Exhibition creation and setup with faculty and art museum
Implement grant-funded collaborative projects into the department workflow
NEH grant “College Women”
Digital asset outreach, awards, and workshops:
Co-curator with art historian Bob Herbert for an October 2016 MHC Art Museum exhibition, “The Recovered History of Prospect Hill”
Workshop presented to the Mount Holyoke College Senior Art Symposium on the topic of best practices of capturing 3D art objects, March 2014
Event photography workshop, MHC Art Museum, November 2014
MHC Archives open house presentation, “A Medium of Change,” 2012
Simmons Graduate School of Library and Information Science continuing education workshop, Digitization Best Practices, 2010 and 2011
New England Archivist, Spring 2010 Annual Meeting. Workshop instruction: Digitization in the Library and Archive: Creation, Management and Preservation of Digital Assets
Awarded the 2009 NITLE Technology Fellow, Mellon-funded project, Decapod. Beta tested usability wireframes for library-based user OCR software
Digitization Strategies, Technologies, and Practices Workshop at the NITLE 2009 Technology Camp, Smith College, Northampton, MA
Co-taught with Elisa Lanzi, then “art information management specialist from Smith College’s Imaging Center”, a 2009 Digital Asset Practicum for the METRO library organization in New York City
Presented at the NITLE 2008 DSpace meeting on digitization best practices, Puget Sound University
NERCOMP Managers series parts 1 and 2, certified 2015
SCRUM project management training, certified 2015
Adjunct Faculty LIS 471 - Photographic Archives and Visual Information (Fall 2017)
Photographs as visual information. Problems of meaning, context, and definition.
Responsibilities of the photo archivist.
History of major types of photographic artifacts and development of photographic genres. Characteristics of 19th-century processes.
Special problems of subject access and remote access. Utilization by scholars, visual researchers, and communication industries.
Onsite examination of management practices in a variety of institutions.
Conservation Photographic Lab Manager, Digital and Conservation Photographic Lab (1998-2006)
The Chicago Albumen Works is a vintage media printing and archival digital duplication conservation lab. Clients are primarily national and international archives, museums, universities, and private collections.
Workflow management, high-resolution scanning and metadata processing, quality control, image management, project tracking, employee training, customer relations, pricing and project bidding.
Worked with one of a kind, rare, and valuable glass, nitrate, and acetate negatives from the late 19th century to contemporary artists.
High-end copy work in black and white and color, all formats of negative duplication and fine archival black and white printing, production job delegation, testing of equipment and process and preventative maintenance.
Artist publication and portfolio work
Event, academic, and architectural photography
Fine art exhibitions and handbound book publishing
Self-published print on demand and eBook titles
Traditional and digital photography teacher and student advisor
Worked with students from diverse social and economic backgrounds
Received 1997 and 1998 Massachusetts State Arts Council Grants, distributed by the city of Holyoke, for the students to produce and execute a traveling exhibition documenting the lives and landscape of inner city Holyoke, “Scenes of a City”
Exhibition at Easthampton City Arts Gallery, October 2017
Exhibitor at the Easthampton Bookfest, April 2017
Exhibition at Western New England College, April 2017
Designed and implemented a UMASS panel discussion on the historical relationship between photography and the book, “Binding Light”, September 2017
UMASS Fine Arts Center, Artist In Residency Grant, 2016
Exhibition at UMASS FAC, Hampden Gallery, September 2016
Source - 2014
Purchased by the Mortimer Rare Book Room, Smith College
Chronology - 2012
Lapse - 2010
Mount Holyoke College, “The Daguerreotype and Beyond.” A presentation on photography during the Victorian era. Martha Ackman’s summer research course, 2015.
Simmons College, “The Photographic Archive, Martha Mahard, The Asa Kinney Project.” A hands on demonstration of 5x7 view camera techniques and re-photography, 2014.
Mount Holyoke College, Urban Geography, Serin Houston, Presentation on “The House of Concrete and Steel” 2012
Mount Holyoke College, History of Photography, Anthony Lee, Presentation on the art of seeing, 2011
Mount Holyoke College, Museum Studies, Presentation on “The Seat of the Muses” 2010
Mount Holyoke College, History of Photography, Anthony Lee, Museum lecture on the photographic print, 2010
Daniel Czitrom, New York Exposed: The Gilded Age Police Scandal that Launched the Progressive Era, 2016
Angela Willey, Undoing Monogamy: The Politics of Science and the Possibilities of Biology, 2016
Christopher Benfey, Red Brick, Black Mountain, White Clay: Reflections on Art, Family, and Survival, 2012
Eugenia Herbert, Flora's Empire: British Gardens in India, 2012
Martha Ackman, Curveball 2010
Elizabeth Young, Remixing the Civil War: Meditations on the Sesquicentennial, 2010
Christopher Pyle “Getting Away with Torture,” Potomac Books, 2009
Susan Barry, “Fixing My Gaze,” Basic Books, 2009
Anthony Lee, “A Shoemaker’s Story,” Princeton University Press, 2008
Elizabeth Young, “Black Frankenstein,” New York University Press, 2008
Visual Resources Association
Final Cut Pro video editing
Photographic historic processes, equipment, innovators, and artists
Social media promotion, marketing, and design
Publishing and print-on-demand
Hiking and chess