Friday Photos: Karen Knorr
Recently, I came across the inspiring work of photographer Karen Knorr and just HAD to share her with you. Born in Frankfurt, Germany and raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico, Knorr finished her education in Paris and London. The artist is currently Professor of Photography at the University for the Creative Arts in Farnham, Surrey.
According to her website, Karen Knorr’s past work from the 1980’s onwards took as its theme the ideas of power that underlie cultural heritage, playfully challenging the underlying assumptions of fine art collections in academies and museums in Europe through photography and video. Since 2008 her work has taken a new turn and focused its gaze on the upper caste culture of the Rajput in India and its relationship to the “other” through the use of photography, video and performance. This photographic series, called India Song considers men’s space (mardana) and women’s space (zanana) in Mughal and Rajput palace architecture, havelis and mausoleums through large format digital photography.
Karen Knorr celebrates the rich visual culture, the foundation myths and stories of northern India, focusing on Rajasthan and using sacred and secular sites to consider caste, femininity and its relationship to the animal world.
Animals photographed in sanctuaries, zoos and cities inhabit palaces, mausoleums , temples and holy sites, interrogating Indian cultural heritage and rigid hierarchies.
Cranes, zebras, tigers and elephants mutate from princely pets to avatars of past feminine historic characters, blurring boundaries between reality and illusion and reinventing the Panchatantra for the 21st century.
How cool is that?!? Hope that you enjoy these images as much as I have!