Beth Yarnelle Edwards

„My intention is not to critique but to observe." (Beth Yarnelle Edwards, Artist Statement 2011)

Beth Yarnelle Edwards Photography satisfies a vice well known to almost everyone – curiosity, maybe even voyeuristic tendencies: our neighbours private rooms are unfolfded in her works . Since 1997 Edwards is working on her project of depicting realitys' everyday stage, beginning in her own neighbourhood the suburbs of Silicon Valley, followed by France, Spain, the Netherlands and Germany. Her pictures are not candid snapshots but extended photographic studies of her subjects. The photographed individuals are completed by their surroundings and depicted in situations they described in interviews as rituals or typical for them. The respective surrounding is treated equally to the persons portrait itself and hence gets represented as stage for dreams, expectations and personal values.

„I begin with a preview visit, during which I introduce myself and interview potential subjects, asking many open- ended questions and listening carefully to the answers while observing everything I can. Since I consider myself to be a stalker of the real, I have devised rules to keep my photographs as truthful as possible"

Edwards view on her subjects is unique. Set in contrast to masters of staging, as Jeff Wall or Gregory Crewdson or neutral documentary photography f.e. Dorothea Lange, her own position situated between genres becomes apparent even more. The photographies are staged, but do not show merely acting in front of a backdrop, but crafted arenas of peoples real homes. The subjects are allowed to present themselves the way they intend to and actually do live, hence they show so much more of who they really are. Beth Yarnelle Edwards proclaimed goal is he depiction of basal truths, a reality that can't be diminished by a pose. A schooled anthropological, as well as sociological view, in combination with theatrical and documentary elements are the pillars of her photography. It might happen that you will find yourself looking for critique or caricatures of suburbia in Beth Yarnelle Edwards pictures only to realise that you are left to deal with your own values and expectations.

Works from the Artist