Terise Slotkin

Picture making is both my vocation and passion. For me the process of capturing the still image is magical. My continually evolving style integrates artistic and commercial pursuits. It is not unusual for the former to become the basis for the latter and visa versa. People are my primary subject matter. I enjoy interacting with my subjects and encourage their input and ideas. My photographs have been widely exhibited and reproduced in a range of publications.

I’ve always enjoyed working on my own and have also had the opportunity to be part of some very provocative groups. Both types of experiences have been fundamental to my aesthetic development.

I was part of the late ‘70s NYC downtown art world. It was a charged environment that expanded the parameters of art making. I was also a founding member of Colaborative Projects. The quirky-themed shows were not curated and took place in venues outside of galleries and museums. I participated in many Colab shows including the Real Estate Show and Times Square Show. The A More Store featured cleverly designed inexpensive items. My husband, Richard Miller, and I produced Spanner NYC, a magazine of art. The then unknown artists we published were encouraged to use the print medium as a creative resource.

Begun incidentally in the late ‘80’s Mixed Doubles are black & white studio portraits of pairs – people connected by birth, marriage, social, business or other ties. I’ve taken the project into many different environments and the results have always been interesting. In 1992 I was part of the Women’s Action Coalition (WAC). Photography provided a way to be involved. Hundreds of smart, creative women met weekly. Our demonstrations featured outstanding graphics and targeted women’s issues as well as the presidential election.

What’s interesting is how much of what I’ve done continues to resonate. It’s a real affirmation that my work from the past is still so vital. I am continually asked to provide photographs from past events and affiliations. There have been recreations of Colab shows and Printed Matter’s recently published book A Book About Colab …and Related Activities perfectly captures the era. Spanner/NYC continues to sell, and my WAC photos are frequently published and exhibited. Excerpts from the Mixed DoublesRed Hook Brooklyn series were recently exhibited and received with such enthusiasm that I am exploring ways to continue it. – Terise Slotkin

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