Containing 10,000 photographs covering the complete 175-year history of the art form and representing its most important artists, the photography collection is the dominant element in the art holdings of the University of New Mexico. A small portion of it is now on display in Stories From The Camera at the UNM Art Museum.
The exhibit was put together by Michele M. Penhall, from 2004 to 2014 the Museum's curator of prints and photography. Her idea for the exhibit, and for the accompanying book from UNM Press, was to invite a variety of artists and scholars, all of them familiar with the UNM collection, to select particular photographs and write about them.
Michele Penhall describes how the UNM photography collection got its start, and how it grew to its present size, in this longer version of her conversation with KUNM.