CloseToHome

family panorama by karen davis

Close to Home, is an on-going series of photographs of three middle class families related to me and to one another by birth or marriage. Working in collaboration with the families – a multi-dimensional stew of cultures – I photograph the quotidian of their lives. Over the years as adults age, babies are born, children grow, illness strikes, divorce looms, relocations occur – I am there, a seen but unobtrusive presence. Most often I work with one family at a time but when members of 2 or 3 families are together, I photograph their connections.

My interest in the family as a photographic subject began with portraits by Tina Barney of her upper class family. Ultimately, it was two British artists photographing their working class neighbors and families that influenced my approach: Nick Waplington The Living Room (1991) and Richard Billingham Ray’s a Laugh” (1996).

The Story of Slavery hits home, from Close to Home series by Karen Davis As a portfolio or exhibition, the prints can only hint at the multiple threads of narrative. As an extended series, each family’s story is more fully portrayed. By adding their voices as text or audio, my goal for Close to Home will be most fully realized. For this reason, beyond the photographs, themselves, I have begun the process of expanding this project into multi-media and book/assemblage formats. Three Points, Harlem by Karen Davis Sisters, West RoxburyNan and Jonathan, ClaverackDust Off, Hong KongWord Games and Treatment, Nantasket BeachAfter a Workout from series Close to Home by Karen Davis Andrea and Nyla with One Braid to Go from Close to Home series © Karen Davis Nyla on a rainy day in Hudson from series Close to Home © Karen Davis Parker and Drawing of Nyla by Maggie from Close to Home © Karen Davis What's up, Junior?Papa John and Nyla - back to the pond from series Close to Home © Karen Davis Noah and Nyla hanging on Papi, from Close to Home © Karen Davis Jon and baby Jesse in Hong Kong from series Close to Home © Karen Davis Nan and Jesse, Jon and the Celtics from series Close to Home © Karen Davis Mark Skypes with Jon from series Close to Home © Karen Davis Parker and Andrea in Hull from Close to Home Series © Karen Davis Ed, Meredith and Maggie - Summer's Night from Close to Home series © Karen Davis Maggie With Pink Jacket from Close to Home Series © Karen Davis Jesse and Nyla at Jon's 40th from series Close to Home © Karen Davis Asia and Nyla from series Close to Home © Karen Davis Papi holding Jesse wanting Mama from series Close to Home © Karen Davis from series Close to Home © Karen Davis John and Captain John from series Close to Home © Karen Davis