Cal Poly recognizes local photographer

February 3, 2012

At a forum on Monday, Feb 6, Cal Poly is honoring the work of a local photographer, while also celebrating diversity on campus.

“Celebrating Diversity,” held in conjunction with Black History Month, begins at 5 p.m. in the Performing Arts Center. The scheduled program includes a number of national and local speakers, a poetry reading, and a presentation honoring 98-year-old Atascadero photographer Joe Schwartz for a lifetime of work documenting the African-American culture.

Schwartz’s work is to be included in the proposed Smithsonian Institution National Museum of African-American History and Culture. Plans call for the museum to be built on the Mall in Washington, D.C. and Schwartz’s photographs, dating back to the 1930’s, will be included in the museum’s permanent exhibit.

Paul Gardullo, the Smithsonian museum’s curator will present the keynote address on Monday afternoon. Other scheduled speakers include Cal Poly President Jeffrey D. Armstrong, San Luis Obispo mayor Jan Marx, and Dr. James Miller of George Washington University in Washington, D.C. The diversity forum also includes a photo tribute to Schwartz and a panel discussion on the benefits of diversity on campus and in the community.

Following the forum, Dr. Armstrong will host a public reception in the lobby of the Performing Arts Center where other photographs by Schwartz will be on display.

“Celebrating Diversity” is a free event, sponsored by Cal Poly and the City of San Luis Obispo. The public is invited to attend.