Professor Osamu James Nakagawa receives 2015 SPE Insight Award

Professor Osamu James Nakagawa receives 2015 SPE Insight Award.

Fine artist and Indiana University Photography Professor Osamu James Nakagawa recently received the Society for Photographic Education’s (SPE) Insight Award. Nakagawa expressed what it means to him to receive such a prestigious award in the field of photographic education and to be among other IU-affiliated recipients, “I must say that I am humbled, honored, and at the same time excited to be on the list of the past recipients such as IU alumnus Jerry Uelsmann; and one of the founders of the Society for Photographic Education, Nathan Lyons; and a highly respected photographer Ken Josephson.”

IU’s Photography program is the second oldest in the nation, begun by photographer and educator Henry Holmes Smith. Nakagawa conveyed the pride he feels over his contributions to IU’s Fine Art Photography program and its long history of success and achievement. “It’s very important for our faculty members to be recognized nationally and internationally and to be active in their fields. I am very happy that I could contribute to our program by receiving a high profile award such as this one.”

The SPE Insight Award not only recognizes Nakagawa’s accomplishments, but also it speaks to IU as being a strong research university as well as acknowledging the efforts of the undergraduate and graduate Photography students. “I am fortunate to be a teacher. I’m fortunate to be in the position to be able to pass along everything I’ve learned over the years to my students. I keep pushing the boundary of photography, and I encourage my students to push beyond their own expectations.”

The Insight award was developed by SPE’s National Board of Directors in an effort to recognize highly distinct achievements made by individuals in the field of photographic education. The entirety of the individual’s career is considered as the Insight Award “symbolizes the realization of a national or international career, or the launching of future endeavors to new challenges, ideas and horizons.”

The recipients of the 2015 SPE Insight Award were invited to attend the 52nd SPE National Conference, “Atmospheres: Climate, Equity and Community in Photography” that is held in their honor. This took place March 12-15, 2015 in New Orleans. SPE recognized the personal achievements of the recipients in saying, “Their significant contributions to the field of photographic education and this organization are deeply appreciated, and we truly look forward to honoring them at the conference.”