This short piece was constructed by Bill’s friend Carol McCusker whom he met in San Diego toward the end of his life. Her personal reflection of their friendship is filled with warmth and insight on how Bill felt about death and the importance of remaining outside the established systems.
Carol McCusker is currently the Curator of Photography. For nine years, she was the Curator of Photography at the Museum of Photographic Arts, San Diego, where she curated more than thirty- five exhibitions. She was also an Adjunct Professor at the University of San Diego and the University of California San Diego.
McCusker received her B.F.A. in studio art and art history at Massachusetts College of Art, Boston. She then received an M.A. and Ph.D. in art history with an emphasis on the history of photography at the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque. In 2009, she was invited to curate at the Lishui Photo Festival in China where her exhibition of photographs by L.A. photographer, Stephen Berkman, won the festival’s First Prize. Along with Peter MacGill and Chris Boot, shewas 2010 Juror for the International Center of Photography Infinity Award/New York. McCusker has received the Beaumont Newhall Award, the Dean’s Dissertation Fellowship Award, and two National Endowment for the Arts Awards.
Some of her essays and exhibitions include American Noir: The Photographs of James Fee (book & exhibition, 2003); Phil Stern: A Life’s Work (powerhouse, 2003); Andrea Modica: Treadwell/Fountain (2005); Terry Falke: Observations in an Occupied Wilderness (Chronicle Books, 2006); “Depth Charge,” Communication Arts (2006); Breaking the Frame: Pioneering Women in Photojournalism (book & exhibition, 2006); Public Privacy: Wendy Richmond’s Surreptitious Cellphone (2007); Jennifer Karady: In Country – Soldiers’ Stories from Iraq & Afghanistan (book & exhibition, 2010); and “The Emperor’s River: Philipp Scholz Rittermann Along China’s Grand Canal,” Public Culture: Duke University (2012).
Between 2009 and 2011, McCusker was staff writer for Color and Bl & Wh magazines. In 2009, she was invited to curate at the Lishui Photo Festival in China where her exhibition of Stephen Berkman’s photographs won the Festival’s “First Prize.” Along with Peter MacGill and Chris Boot, she was 2010 Juror for the International Center of Photography Infinity Award/NY.
Writing and curating from photography’s complete history, from William Henry Fox Talbot’s first calotypes to cellphone videos, defines McCusker’s enthusiasm for the medium’s inspiring range and relevancy.
Image ©David Hurn/Magnum