Keliy Anderson-Staley, ‘Hanson's Tent at the Common Ground Fair, Unity, Maine’, 2008, Aperture Foundation

About Keliy Anderson-Staley

Using a wooden camera and the wet plate collodion method of tintype photography, Keliy Anderson-Staley creates stunning black-and-white portraits in the tradition of Mathew Brady and Julia Margaret Cameron. To create images with incredible depth and contrast, she uses hand-poured chemistry dating back to the 1850s. In the series “[hyphen] Americans” she explores the multifaceted nature of American identity: African-American, Irish-American, etc. The portraits are revealing but anonymous with the subject staring directly at the camera, in the style once used for “scientific” ethnographic studies based on (often racist) interpretations and physical characteristics. She has since expanded the series to include portraits photographed with personal objects, as a way of exploring the way contemporary Americans create their personal histories. In addition, she has created cityscapes, landscapes, and a portfolio documenting artifacts from the home of Winslow Homer.

American, b. 1977, Maine, based in Queens, New York