Visuals Editor, The New Yorker, 1996-2011
Independent Curator, Writer and Teacher, New york
Born and educated in Germany, Elisabeth started working with photographers when Geo magazine, often described as a more contemporary and controversial version of National Geographic, launched in the US. The magazine won many awards for photography and design. Subsequently she moved to Vanity Fair, and as Director of Photography, focused on lively, witty portraiture – which became an important element of the magazine’s success. After seven years at Vanity Fair, Elisabeth returned to Germany to work for Stern, one of Germany’s largest newsweeklies. As head of the Photography Department, she explored the fast-paced world of news and reportage photography, and worked with celebrated photographers all around the world. In 1996, she then returned to New York to become Visuals Editor of The New Yorker for 15 years until she left in 2011 to work as an independent curator, writer, and teacher.
She curated Subjective/Objective and Under the Bridge for the New York PhotoFestival 2011, and New Yorker Fiction/Real Photography at Steven Kasher Gallery in Chelsea. In the fall of 2011 her exhibition Beyond Words: Photography in the New Yorker was the season’s opening show at the Howard Greenberg Gallery. Her exhibition Widely Different: New York City Panoramas was on view at the Seaport Museum, New York in 2012. Next she curated LIFT Off at the Fridman Gallery in New York and REFUGEE was on view at the Annenberg Center for Photography in Los Angeles. In 2017 she curated Farida, a Syrian Tale, for the Museu da Imagen e do Som in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and most recently Lives & Still Lives, Leslie Gill and Francis McLaughlin Gill and their Circle at the Howard Greenberg Gallery in New York.
She teaches at SVA Graduate School for Photography and related Media. Her column Portfolio is published in Photograph magazine. She was a juror for the World Press Photography Awards and the Sony World Photography Awards, in addition to numerous national and international photography juries and she participates in numerous portfolio reviews. She is one of the original founders of The Photography Master Retreat which takes place every year in the south of France. She also advises many up-and-coming photographers and edits their work.