Thursday, September 27, 2012

2012 WIP - LTI/Lightside Individual Project Grant Recipient

I recently received the 2012 WIP - LTI/Lightside Individual Project Grant for my project, Paterson, a series of documentary portraits depicting residents of Paterson, NJ during the years following the economic crisis in 2008.  Many thanks to those who have supported the project thus far.

Thank you to Humble Arts Foundation and Women in Photography for creating and promoting this platform and opportunity for women working in photography.  In March 2008, I participated in a panel discussion on women in photography with Cara Phillips and others facilitated by Humble Arts Foundation.  It's been amazing to witness the evolution of a website inspired by that discussion and how significantly it has contributed to increasing exposure and recognition for women working in photography.  As someone who also curates and writes for an arts site, I appreciate the commitment it takes to keep these projects alive, so thank you to these two talented photographers and WIP's co-founders, Cara Phillips and Amy Elkins, for their dedication.

Thank you to Jeffrey Kane and LTI-Lightside Photographic Services for sponsoring four years of this unique grant.

Thank you to this year's juror Sasha Wolf - the owner and director of an exceptional gallery - and a great supporter of women working in photography.  I met Sasha at her gallery in the spring of 2009 when she hosted two exhibitions curated by Nymphoto, a collective of women photographers. I've deeply felt Sasha's encouragement of my own work and gained enormous respect for her vision and her relationships with artists and the arts community.  I'm truly honored that Sasha has recognized the Paterson series for this grant.

Thank you to my family, always, for their love and their support of my creative life and bearing with me through the ups and downs. Thank you also to my friends and to Tawny for sharing stories and images and for inspiring me with her creativity and passion.

My deepest thanks to the many people in Paterson who have shared part of themselves and their experiences to make this project exist. I began taking pictures in Paterson on a fall afternoon in November 2009, and have made since more than fifty trips to the city and walked countless miles through its downtown streets looking for people with whom I might create a connection.  I have photographed over a hundred subjects and, in some cases, listened to stories about financial hardship, unemployment, homelessness, addiction, and depression. And, in other cases, their stories have been less fraught with these struggles. In every encounter, I've appreciated the willingness of these subjects to make the human connection that is the essence of these portraits.

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