JULY 2007 FEATURED ARTIST || Amy Theiss Giese

Amy Theiss Giese is a 2006 graduate of the New England School of Photography (NESOP) with departmental and portfolio honors and is attending Parsons, the New School for Design's MFA program in photography as of this summer.  She has exhibited at a variety of regional galleries and competitions, including Center for Photographic Exhibitions, Boston; St. George's Gallery, Boston; and Eli Marsh Gallery, Amherst.  Her work is also included in the permanent collection of NESOP, the Mead Art Museum, Amherst, and private collections. 

Featured online will be selections from her new ongoing series, “Ipseity,” which means selfhood or individual identity.  To create these unique panoramas or triptychs with her plastic Holga camera, Giese does not fully advance the film and purposefully overlaps frames.  Thus, she is able to repeat or “perform” herself over and over, acting out new, often surreal, tasks within stark domestic interiors.  Her beautifully-printed gelatin silver prints glow delicately, further complementing the dreamy, otherworldly quality of her imagery.

- Leslie K. Brown, PRC Curator

Click here for Giese's website


Ipseity Series

My photographs are very personal. In my images, I take whatever topic, feeling or situation that I am dealing with and use that as my inspiration. Also, I am motivated to see if I can use the limitations of the camera as a means to reinterpret how I see myself, and those around me.

This body of work is a continuation of my attempt to truthfully express myself, and my use of a camera to capture the effort of trying. In the last year, I began shooting with a Holga camera. Through a fortuitous accident, I shot a roll of film where my frames overlapped. I decided to deliberately use this idea to talk about inner dialogues and the notion of the external persona versus the internal reality of the self. The Ipseity Series is about identity, and how conflicted I feel about the contradicting sides of my personality. I found a visual way to express, literally and symbolically, that I feel dissociated from myself at times. The objects that are carefully chosen for me to interact with or to illustrate a specific theme for an image are picked based on symbolic meaning. The overlapping frames with the blurred edges give a surreal feeling to the images while still maintaining a sense of reality.

The ongoing body of work relies heavily on pre-visualization to determine how the figures interact, the tone of each shot, and its emotional impression. I assume a character for each figure in the frame – the shoots are closer to performance art than straight self-portraiture. It is an exploration of myself in my environment. This series also allows me to actively acknowledge certain sides of my personality that I don't readily show to others, even those closest to me.

- Amy Theiss Giese, 2007


Click on each image for larger version and caption.


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