I’ve begun working on a new photography project with my friend Danielle Askini. She’s a writer, social worker and a trainer for The Center for the Prevention of Hate Violence (not to mention one of my favorite people).
The idea for this project began while I was working on my family’s genealogy. As it turns out a few racist words were actually created on Ellis Island (for more info, see here). My initial notion for the project was to have people of different heritages holding cards with a racist word and the definition. My hope was to demystify and take away the power of these words.
I was also impacted by some of the stories of the participants of my 2003 project ‘One Flesh’ which focused on gender, sex and sexuality. Danielle, herself a past victim of hate violence, was a participant in that project as well.
I’ve decided to combine these two ideas and asked for Danielle’s help, given both her personal and professional connections to the topic. We’ve melded some of our ideas and decided to photograph people impacted by hate speech and violence while incorporating text within the photos to help further illustrate these incidents.
Danielle will be moving in November, so hopefully we’ll at least be able to get an artist statement and some of photographing done. We are looking for other people to participate, so if you’re interested please contact either of us. She’ll also be working on an essay that will be part of the piece.
She also sat for a photo for my project, BlogLife. I hope to post that work soon as well.