Friday, May 21, 2010


on track to the future © Rona Chang

We are very proud of NYMPHOTO and what the collective has accomplished and stands for.
Over the years we have done it all: exhibits, charity auctions, competitions, lectures, events, meet ups, books, blogs, and interviews. We have met and worked with some amazing people and the collective has been an unrivaled experience.
What's next?
Well, we have decided to take a break.
For how long? We don't know. It might be a permanent vacation.
Why? There are many reasons, all of them positive and having to do with our members living life to the fullest.
Thank you for your support and readership. We are grateful.

So long & see you around!

The NYMPHOTO Collective

PS: The blog will stay up as an archive and we encourage you to check in on our personal blogs and websites (find them on the sidebar) to stay in touch.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Another Conversation with Emily Shur

© Emily Shur

Emily Shur, much like Tema Stauffer has been involved or connected to every Nymphoto project. Emily early on participated in our conversation series. It is nice to come full circle. And thus today we present another conversation with Emily Shur - catching up on what has happend since our last conversation and discussing her assignment and her personal work.

© Emily Shur

NP: Can you fill us in a little to what has been going with you since our last interview?

ES: Well, I just looked up the date of our original conversation which was July 8, 2008, so it’s been quite a while. Lots of things have changed, but also lots of things are the same. 2008 and 2009 were very difficult years for me, professionally and financially. I was not making any money, which I’m sort of used to, but it reached a critical point towards the end of 2009, and I was forced to take a hard look at what was going on in my career. The industry was (and still is) shifting away from all of the things I had become comfortable with. I made a living shooting for magazines for almost 10 years, and continuing that has become impossible at this stage in the game. It’s unfortunate because I still love shooting for magazines, reading magazines, browsing at newsstands, etc., but it was time to accept what was happening and make the necessary adjustments. Towards the end of last year, I made a few major professional changes. I changed agents and did a full re-design of my website.

© Emily Shur

Another good thing that came out of this professional slump was that it re-connected me with my personal work. Because of nothing but sheer frustration with what was happening in my work life, I forced myself to shoot things and subject matter that I enjoyed and brought me pleasure. I was worried that my unhappiness with my career was going to spill over into my overall feelings about photography. I always want photography to be enjoyable, fulfilling, and some sort of refuge for me. I was beginning to feel mostly negative feelings about it and needed to stop that before it got any worse. I had lots of free time, so I began to put most of my energy towards shooting and editing my personal work. I applied to reviews and submitted my work to lots of contests and websites. It has been a very enlightening and positive experience, and it’s brought my attitude towards picture taking back around from the dark side.

© Emily Shur

NP: We like the re-design of your site. Particularly that we get to see more of what you call your personal work? Has your focus been shifting? And does your personal work inform your assignment work or vice versa?

ES: Thanks! It was important to me to incorporate more of my personal work into my site re-design. Right now, I’m not yet at the point where my personal work and assignment work are intertwined or derivative of each other. Part of the thought behind incorporating so much of my personal work into the new site was that hopefully I would be looked at in a different light as a photographer. I want art directors and photo editors to know that I can do more than take portraits of famous people. I want them to better understand my overall point of view, and I think that showing my personal work definitely adds an element to my body of work. I would love to get assignment work based off of my personal work, or be asked to use my personal work as inspiration in my assignment work. Showing all of my work together on one site is still kind of new, so I realize it might take a while for people to see me as someone who does quiet landscapes as well as celebrity portraits.

© Emily Shur

NP: In our last conversation you said you weren’t sure what drives your personal work. Do you still feel that way?

ES: I still am not a very project oriented photographer which I half want to change and half don’t care to change. Like I said in my answer to the first question, a lot of my personal work is pretty selfish in nature. Simply stated, it’s how I most enjoy photography. It’s how I remind myself why I love photography, and it’s where I feel most free as a photographer. The only pressure involved is pressure I put on myself. The only person I need to please is myself. So, I guess it really is driven by the hedonist in me.

© Emily Shur

NP: Your blog is popular! And it also has a new look and a new address. Can you tell us how the blog fits into your world?

ES: It is? It does have a new look and new address ( I got nerdy over Christmas break last year and taught myself how to design in Wordpress. The blog is a bit all over the place – one part photography, one part self promotion, one part love letter to The Baroness (our dog), and one part utterly and completely random. The blog is, I think, important to one’s photographic career right now although not everyone needs or wants one. It’s sort of public, so I can understand that not everyone wants to share their inner most thoughts on the internet. My blog is a place where I can get outside opinions on new work, promote upcoming events, and give people a bit more insight into what kind of stuff inspires or interests me. I’ve ‘met’ lots of other photographers and creative people all over the world because of my blog which is pretty cool. Sometimes the blog is stressful for me...I can’t think of things to write about, I censor my real thoughts because I realize that people in a position to hire me might be reading, and I feel a sense of obligation to keep it interesting and updated. So all in all, it’s not this complete zone of freedom and awesomeness, but I do enjoy it, and it makes me happy to think that people all over the world know how cute The Baroness is.

© Emily Shur

NP: What’s next?

ES: I’m planning yet another trip to Japan with my husband so that I can continue taking pictures there. I’m preparing my work for this year’s Review Santa Fe which is in June. I also recently had a piece in a group show at THIS Gallery (in conjunction with MOPLA) on April 30th. I’m hoping this year will bring some good assignment and commercial work, and that I can continue making a living doing what I love.

NP: Thank you so much!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Isa Leshko: The Picture Show

Moonie, Age 32 from the series Elderly Animals and Point Pleasant, NJ #1 from the series Thrills and Chills © Isa Leshko
Head over to NPR's The Picture Show for a recent feature Isha Leskho's work in a piece titled A Photographer, A Holga and Roller Coasters by Claire O'Neill. To re-visit our conversation with Isa, please click here.



Honore Brown, Associate Picture Editor, The New Yorker
Stacey Clarkson, Art Director, Harper's
Kris Graves, Director, Kris Graves Projects
Jackie Ladner, Assistant Photo Editor, New York Magazine
Russell Lord, Fellow, Department of Photographs, Metropolitan Museum of Art
Andrea Meislin, Director, Andrea Meislin Gallery
Tracey Norman, Director, Yancey Richardson Gallery
Amy Stein, Photographer
Sasha Wolf, Director, Sasha Wolf Gallery
Denise Wolff, Editor, Aperture

June 27 / 11:00 - 6:00 / $325

Twice a year The Exhibition Lab will gather a few of the greats in the field to host portfolio reviews for our students. The review will consist of three 20-minute reviews with four of the 10 reviewers listed above. Although we cannot promise, please indicate your top four choices of reviewers and we will take that into consideration.

A "Free Pass Award" based on merit will be given by The Exhibition Lab staff to one applicant which will waive the tuition for the portfolio review. Two "Reviewers' Choice" scholarships will be awarded at the end of the review good for one complimentary Seminar at The Ex Lab.

Stay for the "review after party" where all the artists and reviewers will have the opportunity to meet each other.

To apply, please provide the following materials via

1. A written description of your work, no more than 100 words
2. 10 jpegs sent either in a zip file or attached to an e-mail (jpegs should be 72 dpi and 6 inches at the largest dimension.)

Deadline for submission is June 12th. Artists will be notified of acceptance by June 14th. Payment is due upon acceptance. There is no cost to apply.


548 West 28th Street, 2nd Fl
New York, NY 10001

Open House
Thursday June 3, 2010
6:30-8:00 PM

Find out more about the Exhibiton Lab at this open house and see a list of all upcoming classes by visiting :

Upcoming: Michele Abeles & Others @ PS 1 -Greater New York 2010

Greater New York 2010
May 23–October 18

Opening Day Celebration
Sunday, May 23, 12:00–6:00 p.m.

MoMA PS1 and The Museum of Modern Art present the third iteration of the quinquennial exhibition Greater New York, which showcases the work of artists and collectives living and working in the New York metropolitan area. In addition to presenting recent works by some 68 artists, Greater New York includes an active on-site workshop in which participating artists are invited to experiment with new projects and ideas throughout the duration of the exhibition.

A special performance by Terence Koh will take place at 3:00 p.m., followed by a DJ set by Michael Magnan from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m.

Please revisit our conversation with Michele by clicking here.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Monday, May 17, 2010

Jane Tam @ Umbrage Gallery

Untitled, 2008 © Jane Tam

Jane Tam & Others
Graphic Intersections & The Portrait As Allegory
Umbrage Gallery
111 Front Street, Suite 208
DUMBO, Brooklyn, NY 11201
- through June 26th, 2010

Patryce Bak

Patryce Bak & Others
Hunter MFA Thesis Exhibition
Hunter College Times Square Gallery
450 West 41st Street New York, NY 10036
Between 9th + 10th Avenues
May 19 to June 19, 2010
Reception: May 19, 6 - 8 pm

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Helen Sear @ Klompching

© Helen Sear/courtesy Klompching Gallery

More work by the talented Helen Sear at Klompching Gallery!

Klompching Gallery
111 Front Street
Suite 206.
DUMBO, Brooklyn
-through June 11, 2010

Upcoming Workshops: Mary Ellen Mark

Puerto Rican Day Parade Weekend Workshop
New York
June 12-13, 2010

Two-weeks in India
November 6-20, 2010

Find more information at

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Go-Go Gadget: Conquer The Battlefield

Dubbed "The Battlefield" due to it's battleship-like shape, this amazing D.I.Y. three-hole, pinhole camera uses three simultaneous rolls of 35mm film! This will be an awesome summer project... Built from cardboard, tape, tin foil, felt pens, nails and bottle-tops (amongst other things you can find in your junk drawer). The three roles of 35mm of film run along the length of the box. Complex but comprehensive, you can find the instructions here, with handy diagrams, supply lists and videos. The photos it takes are super-cool!

via Wired and DIY Photography

Friday, May 14, 2010

If You Are in Iceland: Katrín Elvarsdóttir

© Katrín Elvarsdóttir

Katrín Elvarsdóttir
Gallerí Ágúst
Baldursgata 12
IS-101 Reykjavík
+ 354 578 2100 / +354 869 2013
Open Wed-Sat 12-17
- through June 26th

Artist talk with Katrín Elvarsdóttir and Markús Thór Andrésson:
Wednesday the 19th of May at 5.30 pm

Please re-visit our conversation with Katrín, by clicking here.

In collaboration with the City of Reykjavik.

Rachel Hulin, Robyn Lange

Head over to Rachel Hulin's A Photographer's Blog for her interview with Editor Robyn Lange. It published earlier this year, but if you haven't read it yet, it's a good read.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

A Conversation with Sarah Wilson

We are thrilled to present this interview with Sarah Wilson. Sarah's work was first introduced to us many years ago, and as a result, she has participated in past Nymphoto projects. Her unique vision and sensitivity are truly special. When looking at her images, the viewer can immediately detect the regard she has for her subjects and the story she intends to convey.

Johnny Watkins from the series Jefferson Davis Parish, Louisiana © Sarah Wilson

George Conner, from the series Jefferson Davis Parish, Louisiana © Sarah Wilson

Nymphoto: Tell us a little about yourself.

Sarah Wilson: I live in Austin, Texas and I am an editorial photographer, concentrating mostly on portraiture and documentary work. I grew up in Austin through the end of high school, and then moved to New York City to attend NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts for undergrad photography. While working on my own projects after graduation, I interned and assisted for several photographers including Mary Ellen Mark, Ken Schles, Robert Clark, Robert Diadul and Mark Jenkinson. I consider the handful of years working for other photographers as my continuing education. For a young photographer looking to break into the commercial or editorial world, I cannot recommend assisting enough.

During those years after graduation, I completed a couple of personal projects that have had some staying power and influence on my career. One of them, Jefferson Davis Parish, Louisiana, is an exploration of my Cajun roots in Southwest Louisiana, where much of my extended family still lives. With that project, I had my first solo show, sponsored by the Daniel Rosenberg Traveling Fellowship. The other project, Jasper, Texas: The Road to Redemption documents the aftermath of the brutal dragging death of James Byrd Jr., a shocking hate crime that garnered international attention and threatened to fracture an already divided East Texas town. The Jasper photos became an exhibition that traveled to six cities in Texas, as well as New York City. Curators from the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas, and the Museum of Fine Arts Houston have included prints from the Jasper project in their permanent collections. I feel fortunate to have been able to show both of these bodies of work to magazine editors, and other important figures in the photography world at an early point in my career.

Since I moved back to Austin in 2005, I have been working as an editorial photographer for magazines such as Texas Monthly, Mother Jones and Men’s Journal. Just recently, I shot my first assignment for the New York Times Sunday Magazine, which has been a goal of mine for a long time.

Bill King on Death Row, from the series Jasper, Texas: The Road to Redemption © Sarah Wilson

Marlon Forward, from the series Jasper, Texas: The Road to Redemption © Sarah Wilson

NP: How did you discover photography?

SW: I discovered photography at Horizons art camp in North Hampton, Massachusetts the summer after my sophomore year in high school. We were asked to choose two mediums in which to concentrate. I chose drawing and photography, and quickly found that I was MUCH better at photography than drawing, so I stuck with it. I took photo classes in high school and decided to major in photography in college.

Fermin, from the series Blind Prom © Sarah Wilson

Ashley and Victoria, from the series Blind Prom © Sarah Wilson

Melissa and James, from the series Blind Prom © Sarah Wilson

NP: Where do you find inspiration?

SW: As a portrait and documentary photographer, I am inspired by people. If I weren’t a photographer, I would probably be a psychologist or a counselor because I am curious about the intricacies of people’s lives. I ponder why people live the way they do, make the decisions they make, and how these factors effect their overall state of being. Photography serves as a passport into other people’s lives, giving me the chance to sit in someone else’s skin for a little while. I need to be able to read other people’s feelings and attempt to represent them accurately. I believe that a successful portrait can depict the subject’s life, not only in the still instance that the photograph was made, but it can also tell the story of their past and their future.

Although I loved living in New York City, I find myself drawn to the South and to middle America for my personal work. People seem to live their lives more out in the open here than they do in New York, which makes my job easier.

Slow Dance, from the series Blind Prom © Sarah Wilson

Michael and Victoria, from the series Blind Prom © Sarah Wilson

NP: How do your projects come about?

SW: My projects come about rather organically. I met my writing partner for the Jasper, Texas project at a dinner party. We started talking about the interviews he was conducting down in Jasper during the murder trials. This sounded very interesting to me, so I offered to take some pictures for him. We ended up working together on the Jasper project for over two years after that.

Similarly, I met the point person for my current project, Blind Prom, at my sister’s wedding a few years ago. He was my brother-in-law’s best man and he was sitting at the same table with my boyfriend, Keith, and I. He told us that he works as the recreation director at the school for the blind. We were so intrigued by his stories about the students, that Keith ended up making a documentary about the school, called THE EYES OF ME, which aired in March 2010 on PBS’s INDEPENDENT LENS. I served as Keith’s stills photographer for the film, which led to my volunteering at prom.

Ideas for my projects also come from seeing something in the news or an event that’s happening around town. I guess I just try to keep my ears open and follow through on those ideas that keep rattling around in my brain.

The Texas School for the Blind Presentation of The Wizard of Oz © Sarah Wilson

Queen Citriana, Lauren Yvana Guerra © Sarah Wilson

Shot on Assignment for Texas Monthly, 2009

NP: What's next?

SW: I am getting close to the tail end of a long-term project I’ve been working on. For the last four years, I have been volunteering as the prom night photographer for the Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired. At first, I saw the photos as simply a documentation of the night, paired with formal portraits that the students could share with their families and friends. But as I continued photographing, I realized that these images could reach a broader audience. They capture the energy and excitement of a group of marginalized teens participating in the American rite of passage of attending a formal prom. I believe these images can serve as a medium for consideration of what life might be like as a blind teenager. Blind Prom has shown at the Foley Gallery in New York, The New Orleans Photo Alliance Gallery, and in China at the Lishui International Photography Festival. In addition to the prom photos, I have also been documenting other events related to the Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired and I hope that these images from the school will be published in book form someday.

Young Bride of Warren Jeffs at the FLDS Compound © Sarah Wilson

Shot on assignment for Texas Monthly, 2009.

NP: Thank You Sarah!

To see more of Sarah's work, please visit

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Tomorrow: Ariana Page Russel

Ariana Page Russell: Save Face
New photographic work
Platform Gallery
114 Third Avenue South
Seattle, WA 98102
May 13 to June 29, 2010
Artist Reception, May 13, 6 to 8pm

Please re-visit our Conversation with Ariana by clicking here.

Deb Willis, Jess Ingram Talk @NYPH

Bodies In Question: Deborah Willis & Jessica Ingram
Friday, May 14
6:30 - 7:15pm
Get more information at:

Please re-visit our conversation with Jess, by clicking here.

Amy Stein

Amy Stein
Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art
Faraway Nearby
Overland Park, KS
- through May 16, 2010

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Picture of the Week: Talia Greene

© Talia Greene

Please visit to see more of Talia's innovative work.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Opening This Week: The Naked Truth

courtesy Ruben Natal San Miguel

The Naked Truth
Curated by Ruben Natal-San Miguel
Hous Projects
31 Howard Street
2nd Floor
New York, NY
Opening Reception: May 13 @ 6 PM

Susan Meiselas, Nan Goldin, Maria Ruterford, Jen Davis, Naomi Harris, Juliana Beasley and many other outstanding artists.
Please re-visit our interview with Juliana Beasley, by clicking here.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Go-Go Gadget: Recession Accessories

Has the recession hit you right where it hurts... your camera bag? Here are some "creative" DIY projects designed to improve your photography, without emptying your wallet.

This top-ten list of improvised accessories include: tripods made out of string, cereal softboxes (I'd go with fruity pebbles) and plywood reflectors amongst others. Best thing about them? Most of them can be done with stuff lying around your humble abode.

via Photojojo and Cnet UK

Friday, May 7, 2010

Opening Today: Pictures by Women: A History of Modern Photography

(via The Museum of Modern Art)

Pictures by Women: A History of Modern Photography

May 7, 2010–March 21, 2011

The Museum of Modern Art
11 West 53 Street New York, NY 10019
The Edward Steichen Photography Galleries, third floor

For much of photography’s 170-year history, women have expanded its roles by experimenting with every aspect of the medium. Pictures by Women: A History of Modern Photography presents a selection of outstanding photographs by women artists, charting the medium’s history from the dawn of the modern period to the present. Including over two hundred works, this exhibition features celebrated masterworks and new acquisitions from the collection by such figures as Diane Arbus, Berenice Abbott, Claude Cahun, Imogen Cunningham, Rineke Dijkstra, Florence Henri, Roni Horn, Nan Goldin, Helen Levitt, Lisette Model, Lucia Moholy, Tina Modotti, Cindy Sherman, Kiki Smith, and Carrie Mae Weems, among many others. The exhibition also highlights works drawn from a variety of curatorial departments, including Bottoms, a large-scale Fluxus wallpaper by Yoko Ono.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

A Conversation with Livia Corona

© Livia Corona

We are excited to present today's conversation with current Guggenheim fellow Livia Corona.
I first became acquainted with Livia's work during the call for entries for Nymphoto at Sasha Wolf Gallery and I have been impressed with her dedication to her craft, commitment to her projects and her strong vision.

© Livia Corona

NP: Tell us a little about yourself.

LC: I live in New York and Mexico City—I think of the two as a single location, a kind of “Twin Cities” with a 5-hour flight bridging from one side to the other. I studied at Art Center College of Design. I am a photographer and sometime writer. I grew up in Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico. From childhood until the age of fourteen, I traveled with my swim team, staying in the homes of host teams during swim meets in other parts of the country. Unknowingly, during my travels as a competitive swimmer, I was doing my own version of self assigned Field Practicum - Of this time I most vividly remember the family dynamics inside the homes I slept in, comparing them to my own home life, and noting ways one can get by, with and without problems. As a young adult, I studied art history in Europe while on study abroad scholarship. Eventually I moved to Los Angeles for art school.

© Livia Corona

In my current role as a visual artist, I am often familiarizing with new geographies, both for research and for commissioned assignments. My work is drawn by the underlying structures affecting quotidian survival, and my photographs expand on how these manifest on a broader level. Even though my approach to image making is not exclusively anthropologic, I think my photography, to this date, is a continuation of those sleepovers experienced early on as an in kid in a position that required independent, but under-aged travel.

© Livia Corona

NP: How did you discover photography?

LV: There were many moments pointing the way when I was growing up, but I chose to overlook them. I was always setting up photographs here and there, but I was opposed to photography as a career for myself because at that early age I did not know how I could transcend what I then knew of it: the two photographers in my home town only photographed events for the local social pages. I would notice how people would charm up to them yelling, “Shoot me! Shoot me! Put me in the paper”. Oh lord, the tension, I would think. I wasn’t attracted to the possibility of this chant as my life soundtrack when trying to earn a living.

My mother often visited a friend of hers who owned the one photo studio in the city. I would tag along on the visits and pass the time looking at the photo display cases, or hang out the back of the studio to watch how the photographs were being made. The owner of this photo studio was also one of my godmothers, and as a never-ending, very generous first communion gift, she processed my rolls of film for free up until my twenties.

In my early teens my mom and I went to watch a Luis Buñuel film cycle. There I saw a still photograph of a famous scene from “Los Olvidados” (The Young and the Damned). In it, the main characters, Jaibo and Ojitos, are beating up a blind paraplegic musician. The film of course made an impact, but more than the film’s subject I recall trying to imagine who the person who set up these scenes was. I think I experienced here for the first time that capacity of images to reveal perhaps as much about the preoccupations of the image-maker, as about the people portrayed in the images themselves. To simply notice this ability was a good sized step forward at that age, because it almost instantly informed me that there were other languages to communicate through, via the use of photography and narrative. It opened my eyes to listen for this unspoken language.

© Livia Corona

NP: Where do you find inspiration?

LV: It often shows up in research, or as I listen in conversations with or about the subject I am shooting. It is in these conversations that the images start to become clear. As we are talking I’ll think or suggest, “Let’s make a photograph that talks about that!” and I’ll propose an idea. Every image has its own solution. It’s a way to address a specific aspect of what can be an otherwise overwhelming topic, so little by little the story advances. Each shot is meant to stand alone, but collectively the images reveal a whole way of existence, even if seen one image at a time. Before the shooting begins, the people portrayed in my projects already know why I’ve decided to put a camera in front of them and they’ve decided if they want to participate in the story or not. I usually bring samples of previous work, or of the project I am working on. What I do is not straight on documentation, as I am asking people to perform a version of their lives to illuminate an aspect of a topic. One image cannot sum up an entire life. It’s a bit as if we are putting together a play in a small town, where everyone is pitching in to get the story made by the means available. Though I can turn shy about self-revelation and talking about myself in interviews, I am not timid about cohabiting the world of the people I photograph. My point of departure and influence starts from the inside, and it is natural to consider what is important from the perspective of whom I am photographing. Even when I don’t happen to agree with it, there is room to respond from within the image.

My research is almost endoscopic. It starts with one person, usually inside their home, talking a lot, considering every thing mentioned, even if unrelated to the final objective. People really inspire me. This doesn’t mean I like everybody, but it’s a real blessing, as there are so many of us about. And even when some of us aren’t very civil, my overall interest is more about the overall reasons that belie behaviors and social ideology. Why are things heading this way or that? Who’s fomenting this idea? Who and what raised us?

© Livia Corona

NP: How do your projects come about?

LV: Every project has its own catalyst. For my book Enanitos Toreros (powerHouse Books, 2008) it began very casually, when a woman, who has dwarfism and works as a comedic performer, invited me to travel with her group of dwarf bullfighters after I made her a headshot. For the book Of People and Houses (HDA, Austria, 2009) Andreas Ruby, a Berlin based architectural critic and theorist, saw my 2-4-6-8 series of photographs, made as an artist take of a very unique house in Los Angeles, and proposed a type of six week residency in Graz, Austria where I got to interpret characteristics of it most recent architectural projects.

© Livia Corona

In my current work, Two Million Homes for Mexico, my drive comes from the riddle of what living in these neighborhoods can do to the development of a social and creative expression. What are the manifestations of this experience on the young minds growing up in these insular and remote landscapes, as they draw from a singular cultural and socio-economic backdrop? There are now more than 2.7 million of these identical homes built as neighborhoods all over the country. Who is behind this development model? How is it reconfiguring?

© Livia Corona

At broad glance the photographs of these houses, aligned row after row in such colorful and dramatic volumes, surrounded by mountain scenery, lit by a sunny Mexican sky, can remain in that realm of the pictorial panorama that a lot of contemporary art photography gets seduced by. As a visual artist it has been very important for me to transcend this aesthetic appeal, applying it just enough, when necessary, to engage the viewer into a close up view of what is happening inside these graphic and colorful developments. Developers provided infinite rows of identical 100 to 200 square feet homes. Dwellers are now faced with the task of turning the rows into streets and developments into cities. I am inspired by the inventiveness of people in these neighborhoods, who are adapting with a very hands-on approach—despite a limited infrastructure— to procure a more appropriate living environment. Mexicans, as other Latin Americans, are notoriously gifted in appropriating the built environment. My project both celebrates these small individual triumphs as it frames the challenges and abuses made in providing housing for an ever-expanding population.

© Livia Corona

NP: What’s next?

LV: I was recently awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship, which will afford me the opportunity to complete the project Two Million Homes for Mexico. I am currently in New York City, where I do part of my post-production. I love many things about New York; one of them is the efficient pace for productivity in the air that just gets in you. I work out of a small studio, along with two very talented studio assistants. Now we are in the process of a pre-final edit, and working on a book mock-up for presentation to potential publishers. Afterwards, I head back for a long road trip with stops in these housing developments throughout Mexico, hoping to identify and fill any blank spaces of aspects I want to cover.

NP: Thank you so much!

To see more of Livia work please visit: