Other Stories is Ecuadorian-American photographer Karen Miranda Rivadeneira’s first monograph. It focuses on her relationships with the women in her extended family, especially her mother and grandmother. The resulting images exude tenderness and dignity, and incorporate symbols and visual elements subtly that hint at Rivadeneira’s Ecuadorian heritage. Other Stories threads personal and collective narratives that are centered in identity, intimacy, memory, and indigenous knowledge.
The book contains an essay in English and Spanish by Alanna Lockward, a Dominican-German author and independent curator. She is the founding director of Art Labour Archives, an exceptional platform centered on theory, political activism and art.
Rivadeneira has received numerous national and international awards; she is the recipient of the Photographic Fellowship at the Musee du Quai Branly in Paris, NYFA Fellow in Photography in NYC, Individual Artist grant by the Queens Council of the Arts. She has participated at the Latin American Forum in Sao Paulo, the Photo annual festival in Beauvais, France, and exhibited at institutions such as the Smithsonian Portrait Gallery, and the Americas Society. Her work is collected by the Museum of Fine Arts Houston among other private institutions and collectors.
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Karen Miranda Rivadeneira
“I am a graduate from the school of visual arts with a bachelor in fine arts in 05’; during those years I focused on performance art, trance states and native traditions.
In all of my projects there is a direct collaboration with the communities, tribes, groups that I photograph.
What I capture is often informed by my personal background and the places that I tend to gravitate, from the Amazon to the Andes to the Pueblos in the American southwest. My work often draws connection with these places and cultures in a way that is ontological, ethnological and reflective.
I dig in caves, looking for psychic gold, in there I thread personal and collective narratives to explore the peripheries of memory, storytelling and perception while encountering the myriads of ways in which photography can create platforms for diversion and reflection.
Seeing is not always knowing, in the space between presenting realities and representing possibilities meaning gets constructed and construed through past experience, symbols and signs. The indelible impressions caused on the mental landscape through years of religious canonization makes the body forget its basics; we are all made of blood, salt, oil, water, milk and a wild imagination. Ultimately, I am interested in pointing to a form that is far more subjective, permeable and open-ended.
In the fragile memory of time and the stories imprinted in my bones, I search for truths that evoke a wider dialogue and contemplation.”