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Joni Sternbach was born in the Bronx, New York. She graduated from New York University/International Center of Photography with an M.A. in Photography in 1987. She was part of the adjunct faculty at New York University for over 20 years, and is currently a visiting artist at Cooper Union in NYC, a faculty member at ICP, The Center for Alternative Photography where she specializes in teaching wet plate collodion.

Sternbach uses both large format film and early photographic processes to create contemporary landscapes and portraits. Her work centers on our relationship with water, depicting some of the most desolate deserts in the American West to some of the most prized surf beaches in the world.

Sternbach’s solo exhibition, SurfLand, which captures portraits of surfers in tintype, was first featured at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts, along with her monograph, SurfLand, published by photolucida. Her new monograph, Surf Site Tin Type is published by Damiani Editore and is now available.

Her work is included in many public collections, with the most recent acquisition from the National Portrait Gallery in London, The Nelson-Atkins Museum in Kansas City and Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, MA. She is the recipient of several grants including the Clarence John Laughlin award and NYFA.

She is represented by Rick Wester Fine Art in NYC

One Person Exhibitions
– Galerie Hug. Paris, France
– Rick Wester Fine Art. NYC
– Rick Wester Fine Art. NYC
– Rick Wester Fine Art. NYC
– Southeast Museum of Photography. Daytona Beach, FL
– Joseph Bellows Gallery
– Kenise Barnes Fine Art. Larchmont, NY
– Peabody Essex Museum. Salem, MA
– Blue Sky Gallery. Portland, OR
– Lishui Photo Festival. Lishui, China
– String Room Gallery. Wells College. Aurora, NY
– Edward Cella Art + Architecture. Santa Barbara, CA
– Kenise Barnes Fine Art, Larchmont, NY
– Galerie BMG, Woodstock, NY
– East Gallery, Brooklyn, NY
– Kenise Barnes Fine Art, Larchmont, NY
– Bergdorf Goodman, NY
– Julie Saul Gallery, NY
– Dittmar Gallery, Chicago, IL
– Stokker Stikker Gallery, NY

Selected Group Exhibitions
– Gallery at the School of Design at Mount Ida. Newton, MA New Visionaries: Photographers Who Bridge Art + Commerce
– Rick Wester Fine Art. NYC Not Long Hidden
– The Fralin Museum of Art. Charlottesville, VA Looking at the New West
– The Nelson Atkins Museum of Art. Kansas City, MO About Face: Contemporary Portraiture
– Light Factory, Charlotte, NC Sometime Other Than Now: Alternative Processes in Contemporary Photography
– United Photo Industries, Brooklyn, NY Drawn To Water
– KT Fine Art. East Hampton, NY She Sells Seashells by the Seashore
– Candela Books & Gallery. Richmond, VA Unbound
– Santa Barbara Museum of Art Portrayal / Betrayal
– Rick Wester Fine Art. NYC AIPAD, PULSE
– Space 15 Twenty. Los Angeles, CA Hellawood
– Photo Center NW. Seattle, WA surFACE: Contemporary Wet Plate Collodion Portraiture
– Rick Wester Fine Art. Miami, FL PULSE Art Fair
– Lúz Gallery. Victoria, BC IMPRINT :: 2011
– Joslyn Art Museum. Omaha, NE American Landscape: Contemporary Photographs of the West
– Jennifer Schwartz Gallery. Atlanta, GA Wet Plate and Mirrors: Photographers working with historical processes
– The Palos Verdes Art Center, Palos Verdes, CA Surf's Up
– Museum of Ventura County. Ventura, CA Splash: Celebrating Ventura County Beach Culture and Ocean-Inspired Art
– Maison Européenne de la Photographie. Paris, France L’Objet Photographique
– Bric Rotunda Gallery. Brooklyn, NY Water Water Every Where
– Houston Center for Photography. Benfeit Auction
– Aperture Foundation Benefit Auction NYC
– Space 15 Twenty Gallery, LA, CA Stoked on Summer
– Gallery 1500, Sao Paulo, Brazil SP Arte
– Bonni Benrubi Gallery. NYC Hot Fun in the Summertime
– Scheinbaum and Russek Gallery. Santa Fe, NM Summer's Amost Gone
– Sue Scott Gallery. NYC We're All Gonna Die
– Art Strand Gallery. Povincetown, MA It's all about Photography
– Edward Cella Art + Architecture. Los Angeles, CA Transforming Photography
– NY Photo Festival. Brooklyn, NY All Over The Place curated by William Ewing
– Clark Gallery. Lincoln, MA Float
– RayKo Photo Center. San Francisco, CA Into The Ether
– Pulse Art Fair. NYC Artware editions at the VIP lounge
– 23 Sandy Gallery. Portland, OR Ressurecction
– Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum. Santa Barbara, CA Glass Love: Contemporary Art And Surf
– Silvermine Guild Arts Center. New Canaan, CT SPECTRA '07: National Photography Triennial
– Kinz, Tillou + Feigen. NYC By Invitation Only
– Edward Cella Art + Architecture. Santa Barbara, CA Welcome to Our Neighborhood
– Chicago Art Source. Chicago, IL Nostalgic Noir
– Lennon, Weinberg Gallery. NYC Wallpaper Lab
– Museum of Fine Arts Houston. Houston, Texas Photo Forum
– St Louis Art Museum. St Louis, MO Recent Landscape Photography: The Intimate and the Sublime
– Jenkins Johnson Gallery, NYC Inaugural Exhibition
– Foley Gallery. NYC “When We Were Young” July/August
– Photo Eye Gallery. Santa Fe, NM OnLine/OnSite
– Senior and Shopmaker Gallery. NYC Permutations on the Picturesque
– Hofstra University. Hempstead, NY “Where the Island Begins”
– Lehman College Art Gallery. Bronx, NY “Images of Time and Place: Contemporary Views of Landscape” online catalogue
– Kenise Barnes Fine Art. Larchmont, NY “Two Person Show”
– White Room Gallery. Los Angeles, California “Inspirations and Interpretations”
– Islip Art Museum. Islip, NY Body Language
– Akus Gallery. Eastern Connecticut State University. Willimantic, CT Permeable Borders
– Washington Square East Galleries. NYC Small Works
– Sideshow Gallery. Brooklyn, NY “21st Suffragette”
– Kenise Barnes Fine Art. Larchmont, NY “Aqua Marine
– Silver Eye Center for Photography. Pittsburgh, PA
– Paul Kopeikin Gallery. LA, California “Hidden Faces”
– Art In General. NYC ““Little Things”
– Salena Gallery. Long Island University. Brooklyn, NY “Two Person Exhibition”
– Triangle Theater, Long Island University. Brooklyn, NY “Body And Soul” Collaborative Installation
– University Of Texas at Austin A Second Look: Women Photographers at the HRHRC” Catalogue
– Museum Of Modern Art. NY “Pleasures And Terrors of Domestic Comfort” Book
– Houston Center For Photography. Houston, TX “The Other” Catalogue
– Bayfront NATO Center for The Arts. Erie. PA “Totem Polemic Or, The Family Emblem”
– Stokker Stikker Gallery. NYC “Two Person Exhibition”
– Light Work Gallery. Syracuse, NY “Three Person Exhibition”

Grants, Awards and Residencies
– Ucross Foundation. Clearmont, WY
– Ucross Foundation. Clearmont, WY
– Kimmel Harding Nelson. Nebraska City, Nebraska
– Clarence John Laughlin Award. New Orleans Photo Alliance
– The Art Park. Byron Bay, NSW Australia
– The Santo Foundation, Artist Grant
– Center for Land Use Interpretation. Wendover, UT
– Photo Lucida Hard Cover Monograph
– Center for Land Use Interpretation. Wendover, UT
– Honorable Mention. Silver Eye Center for Photography
– Polaroid Artists Support Grant
– Light Work. Syracuse, NY Artist In Residence Grant
– New York Foundation For The Arts
– Artists Space. NYC Exhibition Assistance Grant
– Creative Artists Public Service

Public Collections
National Portrait Gallery, London, UK
The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
Peabody Essex Museum
J.P. Morgan Chase
Tate Museum of Art, Library Collection
Maison Européenne de la Photographie. Paris, France
Museum of Photographic Arts San Diego
Santa Barbara Museum of Art
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
Smithsonian National Museum of American History. Washington, DC
The Cleveland Museum of Art
St. Louis Art Museum
University Of Texas At Austin. Harry Ransom Center
Polaroid International Collection
Bibliotheque Nationale
International Center Of Photography
Center For Photography
Light Work

Master Of Arts. Photography 1987 New York University/International Center of Photography
Bachelor Of Fine Arts. Photography 1977 School of Visual Arts
Studio Art. 1971 – 72 Goddard College. Plainfield, Vermont
Camp Tintype. 2000 Wetplate workshop with John Coffer
Scully and Osterman Studio. 2002 Wetplate Tutorial

Visiting Artist: Cooper Union 2014
Adjunct Instructor in Art: New York University 1986 – 2007
Adjunct Professor of Art: Queensborough Community College. Bayside, NY 2001 – 2002
Adjunct Faculty: Bergen Community College. Paramus, NJ. 1999 – 2000
Instructor In Art: The American School In London 1996
Wet-Plate Workshops: 2003 - present
I have led public and private workshops in wet plate collodion photography, teaching both the basics and advanced techiniques
International Center of Photography
Center for Alternative Photography
Luz Studios, Victoria, BC
Houston Center for Photography
Utah State University, Caine College of the Arts
Peabody Essex Museum
Silver Eye Center for Photography

Surf Site Tint Type, with essays by Lyle Rexer, April Watson and Chris Malloy. publsihed by Damiani Editore 2015 Pleasures and Terrors of Domestic Comfort by Peter Galassi – published by MOMA 1991
SurfLand by Joni Sternbach, essay by Phillip Prodger - Monograph 2009
Face to Face: Ocean Portraits by Huw Lewis-Jones 2010
The Photograph Not Taken by Will Steacy 2012
Promise Land published by Cafe Royal Books 2013