Constructed Family Portraits

In the Constructed Family Portrait series, I found strangers on the Internet and in public and invited them to meet me in rented hotel rooms to pose as artificial families for the camera. What appear at first glance to be conventional studio portraits, documents of genuine intimacy, are in fact confections. I’m interested in both the performance of the portrait and our innate fluency in its codes and gestures, as well as the shifting paradigm of the traditional family structure. The portraits are of ordinary people performing as themselves in an entirely new context; they intuitively follow the rules of the genre, and the group they form for the camera ascribes them an identity. The work explores the public image of family, themes of photographic truth, gender, class, culture and identity. As indicated by the titles of each work, each family is given the name of the hotel where the photograph was taken.


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