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a complex identity

..."I believe that bringing light to this issue can bring strength and insight to others who have experienced similar things to talk about their story, and to understand that being a survivor is a complex identity... we have to look honestly at interlocking systems of injustice..."

Rowan Renee gives her light and photographic art to the issue ---

IMG_7000 (1) rowan renee aperture LJ ki.JPG

This is from her series entitled "Bodies of Wood" and the pic is named "What I Give and What I Keep" (C) 2016 by Rowan Renee, All Rights Reserved. She poses each shot in the series to conceal her face and head, as this one does. That is her own body, which she photographs using a tripod and a remote timer.

IMG_7011 (2) rowan renee pioneer LJ ki.JPG

She teaches and creates at Pioneer Works in Red Hook, Brooklyn, New York.

The two strong linkages to Kiota are (1) their histories of abuse (2) their admiration of Sally Mann: " When I grow up, I want to take pictures just like that!" (:Ki) --- and, in Rowan's case, she is experimenting with old, obsolete cameras and outdated printing techniques just as Sally does in her photographs about death and disintegration.

Pioneer's blog publishes full=face photos of Robyn Renee in much closer focus than her studio shot here, you can see this and more at ---


Robyn also comments "I am trying to present something that hones in on an aspect of our sexuality that is pure and free, the element that is neither a victim nor a predator, that wants to connect with others through the body in a totally essential manner."

And Ki, in her last weeks, comments that she better get used to people reading "this shit" once she publishes her memoir about it. Ki also writes about purity and freedom in her lost "Poem of a Broken Girl" (May 2004):

"...remember those days
of dancing barefoot in the rain
of thinking i loved, thinking i
was loved. of laughing
just because i felt
like laughing. those days when
i was immortal just because
i wanted to live so bad...
a teddy bear
holding the memories of a sacred
childhood. was i ever a child?
i must've been,once.
everyone was a child, once.
even me.

Interlocking systems of injustice, yes. Oppressing them both (and many of us too.)

Had Ki been able to continue her career, I think it is probable that she would be inspired by Robyn (they're roughly the same age now), to emerge from behind her camera and make similar photographs, writing with light. Since that's what the word means, going back to ancient Greek.

LightWriting going forward, too. Into forevers.