In 2010, Alicia Candiani, an international Argentine artist and independent scholar based in Buenos Aires, Argentina, invited me to participate in an international self portrait project. I had not drawn or made a self portrait for decades. I had helped others through my Portrait of Self process create their own complex journal “self portraits”. This side activity is now central in my new studio investigations.
Currently, I am working on the portrait project Ghosts: Faces in the Stream. I am photographing inner city youth in Kansas City and have applied for grants to go to Buenos Aries to work with Alicia at Ace’ arts residency and photograph youth there. Each young person will have the opportunity to speak for themselves, represent who they are, tell their histories and document their lives. I will use their photos and writings as a resource to create complex layered portraits as large-scale digital prints for exhibition. Each participating young person will also receive their portrait. The final phase of the project will be designing and publishing a book on the project. Like all my projects, where I start and where I end are very different locations. So we shall see where this journey takes me, them and you.