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).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.