Pioneer Public – Ben Schonberger

Carley Bonk

Written By Matt Petras, Co-Features Editor

Ben Schonberger is a photography professor on campus, but that’s not all there is to say about him.

Recently, Schonberger left his home in the North Side for a five-day trip to Amsterdam where he attended an art exhibit featuring his work, among 19 others’. “I’m still jet-lagged,” he said, laughing, in a phone interview Friday.

The show, “Foam Talent,” brought together work selected from a pool of 1,790 submissions across 75 countries, according to the Foam website. The exhibit starts at the Foam Museum and tours throughout Europe. Being a part of such a show was a strongly affecting moment for Schonberger.

“It’s one of those milestone moments in your career as an artist,” he said.

Throughout his career, Schonberger has put together multiple books containing his photography, such as his most recent, “Detroit Shoreway.” This book incorporates found photos as well as photos he took himself.

In 2010, Schonberger graduated from Shepherd University with a BFA in photography and computer imagery, and in 2013 he received an MFA from the Cranbrook Academy of Art. Before teaching at Point Park, Schonberger also taught for Shepherd as well as the University of Akron.

At Point Park he’s had the opportunity to help young photographers hone their own styles.

“We have so many students doing so many different things,” he said.

Sometimes a student is undecided. Some will approach him, he said, and ask what he or she should take photos of. What he said he tells them gets to the heart of his philosophy regarding photography.

“What do you care about?” he said he tells students. “What stories are worth telling?”