HORIZON BOOKS IN TRAVERSE CITY, MICHIGAN

 

PRESENTS 

 

INTERMARRIED  

PHOTOGRAPHS BY YAEL BEN-ZION

WITH ESSAYS BY AMY CHUA AND MAURICE BERGER

 

FINE ART PHOTOGRAPHER YAEL BEN-ZION DISCUSSES HER WORK WITH THE ESTEEMED LOCAL AUTHOR AND CURATOR 

GEORGE SLADE FOLLOWED BY A BOOK SIGNING

 

 SATURDAY, OCTOBER 25 FROM 4-5:30PM

 


"Richly saturated with color and light, the imagery of Ben-Zion's artful and intimate photographs is, in turn, routine, compelling, and surprising. Sometimes focused on people, other times only on the artifacts they live with and the spaces they live in, these dynamic views of everyday life serve as a window onto larger historical, cultural, and social issues." - Maurice Berger

Following her award winning monograph 5683 miles away (Kehrer, 2010) in which 
Yael Ben-Zion considered the meaning of "normal life" in her homeland of Israel, the New York based photographer now fixes her camera on another personal, yet politically charged theme: intermarriage. This new body of work was published in the spring of 2014 in the photographer's second monograph with Kehrer, Intermarried. The genesis of the project was an Israeli media campaign that criticized the "loss" of Jews to intermarriage. Being intermarried herself, Ben-Zion was propelled to explore through her photography why people choose partners that are outside of their "immediate social group." Intermarried, which includes essays by Amy Chua and Maurice Berger, explores this complex issue with insight and sensitivity. 

The next event for the book which has received stellar press coverage, including a feature in The New York Times, is in Traverse City, Michigan. Following are details:

Saturday, October 25
4-5:30pm

Yael Ben-Zion Discusses Her Work with Local Author and Curator George Slade 
Followed by A Book Signing

Horizon Books 
243 E. Front Street
Traverse City, MI 49684
800-587-2147

Free, Open to the Public
For more information go here.

About the book

Ben-Zion initiated Intermarried in 2009 by contacting an online parenting group in Washington Heights, the Manhattan neighborhood where she resides with her husband and twin boys. She invited couples that define themselves as "mixed" to participate, leaving the definition of intermarriage open to the interpretation of the respondents. Ben-Zion was interested in the many challenges faced by couples that choose to share their lives regardless of their different origins, ethnicities, races or religions.

 

  

"Murphy bed"

"The term "mixed" is strictly an outsider observation. It is a term that "others" would

use to define what their eyes see. ... Most people in "same/same" relationships would be

surprised at how quickly "different" disappears ... " (Cedric)

 

The families presented in this book all gave Ben-Zion access to their homes to photograph themselves, their children, and the spaces they live in. These images are not straightforward portraiture or documentation, but rather intimate moments and depictions, which allude to the personal experiences of Ben-Zion's subjects within a wider social and political context. Through layered images and revealing texts culled mostly from a questionnaire she asked her subjects to fill out, Ben-Zion constructs a subtle narrative in which she explores and interprets the complex, multifaceted issues posed by intermarriage.

 

"West Side Story"

"Jeff is Catholic and I am Jewish - that difference has defined us mostly because of the impact

our relationship had on our families, who were not supportive of our being together. ... " (Ilana)

 

It is Ben-Zion's hope that her new book will foster a dialogue and create a "platform for thinking and talking about issues that are very personal but have vast social and political implications." In light of the current public discourse surrounding interracial and interfaith marriage, the publication of this book is very timely.

 

 

"Frames"

Beatrice Rippy married Carroll Hollister in New York in 1959, one year after Mildred and

Richard Loving got married in Washington, D.C. to avoid the anti-miscegenation statutes

of their home state, Virginia. New York is one of the nine states in the US that never

enacted anti-miscegenation laws.

 

Book Details:

Hardcover

Publisher: Kehrer

128 pages; 57 color illustrations

ISBN-13: 978-3-86828-418-8

11.9 x 9.4 x 0.7 inches 

$50 U.S.; To order the book, go here

 

Yael Ben-Zion was born in Minneapolis, MN and raised in Israel. She is a graduate of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Yale Law School and the International Center of Photography. Ben-Zion's work has been exhibited in the United States and in Europe, and she is the recipient of various grants and awards, including ICP's Directors' Scholarship Award, the International Photography Awards and recent grants from NoMAA and the Puffin Foundation. In 2007, her photograph Crash was selected for the cover of American Photography 23. Ben-Zion's first monograph, 5683 miles away (Kehrer, 2010), was selected as one of photo-eye's Best Books of 2010 and for the PDN Photo Annual 2011. It was also a nominee for the German Photo Book Award 2011. Intermarried, her second monograph with Kehrer, was selected for American Photography 30 and featured in a variety of publications, among them, The New York Times Sunday ReviewPhoto District News and the ForwardTo visit the artist's website, go here.

George Slade brings nearly 30 years of professional experience and insight to his various roles with artists and arts organizations. After receiving his B.A. from Yale, Slade began his career as an editorial assistant at Aperture, the famed photography publisher in New York City. His work as a curator, consultant, historian, and writer has taken him around the world and into contact with dozens of organizations and hundreds of photographers.

 

Since the turn of the millennium he has had essential, long-term roles with Minneapolis Institute of the Arts, Minnesota Center for Photography (Minneapolis), FORECAST Public Artwork and Minnesota Museum of American Art (both in St. Paul), and the Photographic Resource Center at Boston University. His essays and book reviews have been published in artist monographs, exhibition catalogues, art and history magazines, and on-line in his own blog, re:photographica, and elsewhere. Slade received an award from the Creative Capital/Andy Warhol Foundation Art Writers Fellowship Program in 2007 for writings on photography and memory. He is currently completing a Masters degree in Organizational Leadership at St. Catherine University in St. Paul.

 

Since September 2013 Slade has been making the transition from Minnesota to Michigan with his wife and their son. One of his biggest challenges has been finding room for his book collection. He was born and raised in St. Paul, Minnesota, but is thoroughly enjoying becoming a Michigander.

 

Media Contact: To receive a copy of the book and artwork and to arrange an interview with Yael Ben-Zion, please contact Andrea Smith, 646-220-5950, andreasmith202@gmail.com.