In Conversation with… Elinor Carucci

In Conversation with… Elinor Carucci.

Photographer Elinor Carucci speaks with Lecturers Jonathan Worth and Matt Johnston as part of the free and open photography class #picbod at Coventry University.

Having explored some of Elinor’s work I was interested to hear about her motivations and influences. In this interview with Jonathan and Matt she talks about what made her enter into the world of photography and talks of the evolution of her work being an almost organic process.  This is something that I can really identify with. Unlike Carucci , who was photographing her family  in her teens, I came into photography later on in my life, but like her I have found an intimacy in shooting my family and nearest and dearest. I feel that this level of intimacy can only be achieved if the sitter and photographer have a bond and level of trust between them. This is why I enjoy photographing my children, not only to capture the memories of them growing up, but to capture their character and natures. I want my work to reflect this trust bond.

She talks about the influence that she found in the work of the likes of Sally Mann and Nan Goldin, both of whom offer intimate portrayals of their subjects. Sally Mann in Immediate Family and Nan Goldin in Phaidon 55

She also talks about the controversy that surrounded Mann and the photographs that she took of her children. Mann was subject to intense criticism from the Christian far right when she published her work. Carruci states that she received less condemnation that Mann had and finds that this is partly due to the way society has access to social media. This level of intimacy is no longer shocking in an age of twitter, facebook et al. This is something that I find myself agreeing with, we are somewhat desensitised to images like those created by Sally Mann, they no longer shock, although I still question whether or not they are exploitative and push the boundaries of trust and intimacy too far.


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