“Every so often an artist comes along who defies the easy labeling that curators and critics feel obliged to stick on everything under their rapacious gaze. In spite of lacking obvious inspirations and role models, these artists manage to create deeply felt, radical works that an extraordinary number of viewers respond to with fervor and pleasure.”
Tenneson is among the most respected photographers of our time, and has been described critically as “one of America’s most interesting portrayers of the human character.” Her work is a combination of portraiture and mythology – she is interested in discovering the archetypes of our being.
Her work has been shown in over 150 exhibitions worldwide, and is part of numerous private and museum collections. Her photographs have appeared on countless covers for magazines such as: Time, Life, Entertainment Weekly, Newsweek, Premiere, Esquire and The New York Times Magazine. She is also a much sought-after portrait photographer with clients in Europe, Japan, and the United States.
She is the author of eight books and she is the recipient of numerous awards, including the International Center of Photography’s Infinity Award, for best applied photography. In addition, she has been named “Photographer of the Year” by the international organization, Women in Photography. A recent poll conducted by American Photo Magazine voted Tenneson among the ten most influential women in the history of photography. Joyce lives and works in New York City.
Her portraits go beyond a surface recording of her subject’s likeness. Her signature-style images attempt to show the inner person who hovers behind the façade. Says Tenneson: “I want to allow others to reveal and celebrate aspects of themselves that are usually hidden. My camera is a witness, it holds a light up for my subjects to help them feel their own unique power. The resulting portraits invite the viewer to participate in the search for individuality that inspired the portrait session.
”In this series of photographs, Joyce Tenneson breaks new ground by recording the often unseen, the overlooked later phases in a plant’s life. By celebrating the life cycle – birth, bloom, death and regeneration, Tenneson helps open our vision to appreciate flowers in a new way.
Comparing flowers to people is a unique and fresh perspective – one that is bound to become a talking point among all who treasure beauty.
Flower Portraits: The Life Cycle of Beauty is a rumination on the poignancy, mystery and beauty of life itself. Some record the monumental and architectural nature of her subjects, others record the far corners of fragility as the labyrinth of life’s journey reaches its inevitable end. All speak to us of the interconnectedness of the universe and reflect back on the human condition. This collection helps enlarge our view not only of flowers but of life in general.
”Joyce Tenneson’s sensuous photography has graced magazines, books and gallery walls for many years. Most recently, her insights have tapped into broader cultural issues, striking a chord of a growing number of people that react to her images. With her Wise Women book, the first in a trilogy that will unfold over the next few years, people of all ages have noticed the style and sensitivity that Joyce’s photographs convey. Her alluring portraits of women over the age of 60 make us all excited versus regretful that we may each one day blossom into our 60s, 70s and beyond.”
photographer and author