Art Beat: Photographing The Night

Nov 7, 2019

One of Steve Giovinco's nighttime images
Credit Steve Giovinco

There is magic in the night. And mystery. And, sometimes, fear. These are some of the things that draw photographer Steve Giovinco to the night. Night-time photography is his passion. His photography has been exhibited around the world.


Giovinco recently arrived in Vicksburg where he is photographing the now-empty Lee Paper Company paper mill — at night.

“Night photography has interested me for the past 10 years or so,” Giovinco says. “It’s almost like a walking meditation when I’m out in the nighttime. It’s kind of on this edge of moments of discovery, these moments of fear, and these moments of transformations. The things you don’t see in the day, you see differently at night.”

Giovinco says he was afraid at times when photographing projects in Greenland and Wyoming, camping at night and hearing coyotes howling in the distance. Sometimes it was just being alone in the vast dark. But Giovinco says overcoming that discomfort has always been worth the pursuit of a night photograph that captures the unusual and rarely seen.

Steve Giovinco

Giovinco is the new artist involved in the Prairie Ronde Artist Residency, located in and around the 420,000-square-foot, now-abandoned, Lee Paper Company paper mill in Vickburg. It awards three artist fellowships each year.

“I plan to photograph inside and outside the mill,” says Giovinco. “Most or all of it will be in the nighttime or in twilight, using different types of light. The idea is to make these long exposures. What interested me in this project is using the interior space of the factory, because it is so large, almost as an outside landscape, to discover the remnants of what’s there now and to touch historical elements that still remain.”

Steve Giovinco give a presentation along with a small exhibition of his photographs during his Prairie Ronde Artist Residency in Vicksburg on Thursday, November 14, from 6 to 8 p.m.

After earning a Master's degree in fine arts Yale University, Giovinco has exhibited his work internationally in more than ninety shows. He was awarded four Yaddo artist residency fellowships; was a Fulbright Fellow alternate; won a grant to photograph Greenland’s climate change from the American-Scandinavian Foundation; and the French Ministry of Culture awarded him a fellowship and exhibition. Museums collecting his work include the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, the Brooklyn Museum of Art, Yale University, the Butler Institute of Art, the California Museum of Photography, the Winnipeg Art Gallery, and the Lowe Art Museum in Miami, Florida.

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