Rhea L. Combs is the curator of photography and film at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of African American History and Culture and the Head of the museum’s Center for African American Media Arts (CAAMA). She is the author of Exceeding the Frame: Documentary Filmmaker Marlon T. Riggs as Cultural Agitator.
Combs received her doctorate in American Studies from Emory University where she concentrated in film, gender, and African American cultural production. Combs has independently curated shows both nationally and internationally, including a film series at the Institute of Contemporary Art in London that highlighted the work of contemporary filmmakers of color under the age of 30. She’s also worked as an Assistant Curator at the Spelman College Museum of Fine Art, and the Chicago Historical Society. Combs’ university experience includes, the Pacific Northwest College of Art, Lewis & Clark College, and Chicago State University. Combs’ writings have appeared in anthologies, academic journals, and exhibition catalogues. Most noted, she has an interview with filmmaker Camille Billops in the exhibition catalogue, Cinema Remixed and Reloaded: Black Women and the Moving Image Since 1970 and is currently working on a photography book series Double Exposure.
PNCA’s Low-Residency MFA in Visual Studies summer 2014 session includes a Summer Lecture series featuring talks by visiting artists that are free and open to the public. With the visiting artists & scholars Low-Res MFA students will participate in a site-specific project retreat at Leland Iron Works, workshops through the Fashioning Cascadia exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Craft, studio visits, critiques, and demonstrations each week throughout the summer session.