Amelia is 14 years old. In many ways, she is your average American teenager: since she was three years old, she has been her mother’s muse, and the subject of her photographs. However, not every mom is a world-class photographer with a predilection for photographing animals. And it’s not every teenager who has portraits of herself with elephants, llamas, ponies, tigers, kangaroos, chimpanzees and endless dogs, cats, and other animals--portraits that hang in the collections of major art museums around the world. Amelia and the Animals is Robin Schwartz’s second monograph featuring this collaborative series dedicated to documenting her and Amelia’s adventures among the animals. As Schwartz puts it, “Photography is a means for Amelia to meet animals. Until recently, she took these opportunities for granted. She didn’t realize how unusual her encounters were until everyone started to tell her how lucky she was to meet so many animals.” Nonetheless, these images are more than documents of Amelia and her rapport with animals; they offer a meditation on the nature of interspecies communication and serve as evidence of a shared mother–daughter journey into invented worlds. Robin Schwartz (born 1957) earned an MFA in photography from Pratt Institute, and her photographs are held in the collections of The Metropolitan Museum of Art and The Museum of Modern Art, in New York; Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C.; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Brooklyn Museum; Chrysler Museum of Art, Norfolk, Virginia; Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris; and Museum Folkwang, Essen, Germany. She is an assistant professor of photography at William Paterson University and lives in New Jersey with her husband, Robert Forman, daughter, Amelia, and five companion animals.
With this series, Aperture presents five of the most promising artists featured on tinyvices.com, the popular online gallery founded by independent curator and photographer Tim Barber. Presented in five separate volumes, and limited to 1,000 copies per edition, the series reflects the loose spirit of the website and offers a range of styles and approaches to photography-Kenneth Cappello's casual snapshots of the skate scene of his youth, Allan Macintyre's rigorous investigations of geological activity, Jason Nocito's playful groupings of disparate images, Robin Schwartz's disquieting portraits of her daughter and Jaimie Warren's theatrical self-portraits. Each book is introduced by a prominent artist, writer or curator. Since its inception in 2005, tinyvices has become an influential platform for emerging talent, featuring the work of hundreds of photographers and artists, including Ryan McGinley and Dash Snow. Its corresponding exhibition opened in New York in 2006, and has since toured worldwide, from Proyectos Monclova in Mexico to Colette in Paris. Robin Schwartz, born in Passaic, New Jersey in 1957, earned her MFA in photography from Pratt Institute in 1981. Her photographs have appeared in The New York Times and the Los Angeles Times.