Outdoor Installation Honors Women Who Photograph Music

Columbia worked in conjunction with the ARChive of Contemporary Music, Metro/smartbar, the Museum of Contemporary Photography and the Wabash Arts Corridor to honor women who created the mythology and iconography of popular music.

Columbia College Chicago is a part of a partnership to honor women who photograph music.  

The outdoor installation “From Her to Eternity: The Women Who Photograph Music” hangs on the windows of the Student Center at the corner of Wabash Ave and Eighth Street. The installation will hang until September 18.  

This project is presented by the ARChive of Contemporary Photography and Metro/Smartbar, in conjunction with the college, the Museum of Contemporary Photography and the Wabash Arts Corridor. 

Comprised of influential photos shot entirely by women, the installation honors those who created the mythology and iconography of popular music.  There are 47 artists whose work is featured in the exhibition.  

 The installation spans genres and decades and includes everything from album covers to portraits, from live shots to candid shots. It includes images of artists Bjork, Buddy Guy, Chance the Rapper, U2, and many more.  

The project was spearheaded by ARC Board of Advisor member Courtney Love, ARC creative director Julie Panebianco, and Joe Shanahan of the Metro/Smartbar.  

“We created this exhibition as a tribute to the women behind the camera, to honor those who have taken iconic photographs and whose names should be as recognizable as what we have been privileged to see from their lens,” says Panebianco and Love in a joint statement. 

The exhibition was named in tribute to Anita Lane, a member of the Birthday Party and Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. Lane co-wrote the song “From Her to Eternity,” which would come to be the title of the band’s first album. ACR got permission from Lane’s family and Cave to use the title to honor Lane, who died in 2021.  

“From Her to Eternity: The Women Who Photograph Music” is at the heart of the South Loop and the Wabash Arts Corridor.  

The Wabash Arts Corridor is Chicago’s living urban canvas which was founded by Columbia in 2013. Since then, WAC has grown to be one of the most expansive, diverse and accessible public art programs in the country. It was recently voted to USA Today’s Best10 Art Districts to Visit.  

The Museum of Contemporary Photography is also at the core of Columbia’s campus. MoCP is an international hub for photography which generates ideas and provokes dialogue among students, artists and diverse communities through groundbreaking exhibitions and programming.  

Spearheading the project, The ARChive of Contemporary Music is the first and only major independent institution to collect, preserve, document, systematize and digitize all formats and genres of contemporary popular music. The organization’s mission is to create the most complete collection of recorded music to inspire, entertain, and educate many generations to come.  

Alongside ARC, the installation was spearheaded by Metro and smartbar, one of the few independently run venues in the world. A legendary Chicago music venue in the city for over 40 years, smartbar continues to be a mecca for electronic music and is dedicated to promoting house and techno music. With a heavy focus on community development, smartbar still hosts some of the best residencies and offerings, as well as the most forward-thinking artists from around the globe.