TUCSON, AZ.- The Center for Creative Photography
, or CCP, at the University of Arizona received a $3.5 million estate gift from the late Arthur J. Bell, a former photographer and professor at Columbia College in Chicago.
The gift was made in recognition of the international importance of the CCP, said director Katharine Martinez. It was Bell's final nod to his passion for photography a passion that grew with his exposure to famous American photographers Harry Callahan and Aaron Siskind, both of whom house their archives in the CCP.
Private funding aids the CCP's preservation of the work and archives of renowned international photographers.
Using Bell's gift, the CCP is creating a permanent full-time position, the Arthur J. Bell Senior Photograph Conservator. The new position will plan and implement short and long-term goals pertaining to the care of photographic materials in the center's collections and recruit staff for the CCP's conservation lab.
"The quality and size of the center's collections underscore the need for a full-time conservator," Martinez said. "This is the culmination of a significant effort to create a conservation program that began in 2008 with the construction of a state-of-the-art photography conservation lab in the center."
Bell's generous estate gift provides a substantial boost for the center, which relies heavily on endowments and outright private gifts for support.