Lot 32: Henry Horenstein

Cownose Ray, Rhinoptera bonasus
18 x 12
Series: Animalia
Signed verso ink
Courtesy of the artist
Fair Market Value

BIO: Henry Horenstein is a professional photographer, filmmaker, teacher, and author since the 1970s. He studied history at the University of Chicago and earned his BFA and MFA at Rhode Island School of Design, where he is now professor of photography. Henry’s work is collected and exhibited internationally and he has published over 30 books, including texts used by hundreds of thousands of college, university, high school, and art school students as their introduction to photography. He has also published several monographs of his own work, including: Shoot What You Love, Histories: Tales from the 70s, Show, Honky Tonk, Animalia, Humans, Racing Days, Close Relations, and many others. In recent years, Horenstein has been making films, including: Preacher, Murray, Spoke, and Partners. He lives in Boston.

STATEMENT: Photographing animals is very different from photographing people. You can’t tell an elephant where to stand, and you can’t ask a skate to smile or a lizard to say cheese. Instead, you must be very patient and wait, hoping your subject will do what you want it to do or maybe something else unexpected that might make a good picture. When animals do cooperate, you have to be ready, because most won’t stay in one position long. You have only a few seconds, and often less, to get your shot. This was a perfect project to snap me out of my mid-life crisis. It was not demanding or stressful shooting. It was calming and quiet. It required patience, not chutzpah. Unlike documentary work, I didn’t have to con anyone into allowing me to shoot them. Animals couldn’t care less.

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