Authentic Image of the World - Maine College of Art

Greta Grant '16

After taking color photography classes I realized how essential color is to my work.

Describe a body of work that you are currently working on.
In my current body of work, I am investigating disappearances, and what remains in the wake of those who are absent, but still alive. These photographs explore intimacy, identity, and loss within a family. I sometimes construct my photographs, but most are made spontaneously, as I aim to express an authentic image of the world in which these events are unfolding. By photographing letters that I have written to my mother as well as those that my mother wrote to her family when she was my age, I provide a visual example of the inevitable repetition of actions that reverberate down this family line; more simply put, I show how I repeat my mother’s mistakes. My photographs describe a melancholy place and the women which occupy it, while the letters provide the viewer with a suggestion of what may have happened there. I shoot medium format color film and make large inkjet prints of the images.

What made you chose to go into your current field of art?
I have always had an interest in art and have painted and drawn since a very young age. I received my first digital camera as a birthday gift when I was twelve or thirteen and quickly became obsessed with making photographs. I soon started shooting black and white film as well. By the time I got to MECA, I already knew that I wanted to be a photography major.

How has your education at MECA shaped you as an artist?
I have learned a ton of technical skills at MECA, especially in terms of scanning and printing from color film. When I first arrived here, I had only ever printed black and white film, but after taking color photography classes I realized how essential color is to my work.

What inspires you?
I am inspired by other photographers and artists as well as things I find visually potent in my everyday life. My close friends and family are also a huge inspiration to me.

What do you hope to do after graduation?
After graduation, I hope to pursue a career that allows me to keep making work as much as possible. I am not sure exactly what I’d like to do yet, although I am interested in teaching photography. As long as I can keep making photographs and growing as an artist, I will feel successful.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
The world is infinitely more interesting than what you have to say about it. The best general life advice I’ve ever received is to eat trash and be free.