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Head Shot 65
At the Edge of Devil's Throat - Iguaçu Falls, Brazil '71

Shari Kessler

Woman with a Camera

From studying fine art black-white photography with Minor White at M.I.T. to realizing a successful internationally career in Asia and Latin America. From lugging large format cameras up the Andes to shooting corporate Investment guides around Asia; to being the first American artist invited to exhibit in Hanoi since the American-Vietnam war; and having work purchased as Public Art by the State of New Mexico, Shari’s resume reflects her life as a global photographer. 

Shari Kessler runs her studio, Head Shots in Santa Fe, NM. She is also Associate Professor of Media Studies at The New School, NYC, where she developed and teaches three on-line courses: Projects in Visual Storytelling; Visual Media--Grammar, Semantics, Syntax; and Global Lens - World Photography & Film.

Clients include National Geographic Society, Smithsonian Institution, The World Bank, Thai Airways, BBC, London Times, McGraw-Hill Publishers, Citibank, International Folk Art Museum, Santa Fe, NM.

Artist Statement

I started out as a photography purist in film, practicing heightened awareness with my guru, Minor White, at MIT in the late 60’s.

Today, I work within the world of meta-photographic processes: digital technology. I shoot what pricks my mind and excites my eye and then re-imagine the subject in post. Digital collage is a big detour for me to look at subjects in a whole new way-- subjects photographed are a point of departure, not the final image and become part of a complex puzzle of the seen and the unseen-- rendering viscerally and intellectually a visual story.

For the subjects I choose, I feel a deep connection. I continue visual explorations beyond traditional constraints with other subjects; questioning, disrupting, stirring emotion, developing new narratives for what I see, feel and think.

I challenge the viewer to look hard and think hard about what is at the surface of the image and what angels or demons lie below.

I have photographed all over the world, on editorial and commercial assignments. While working in Russia as the medical photographer with Operational Smile, one of the surgeons told me that I was like a potato-- put me anywhere and I will sprout!

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