Rachel Loischild is a Boston-based artist and photographer as well as a Massachusetts Cultural Council Fellow in Photography. She holds her MFA in photography from Pratt Institute and her BA in studio art from Clark University. Her work has been widely shown nationally at galleries and museums, and internationally at the Jounju Photo Festival in Korea, she was also recognized by the Inge Morath Foundation in IM magazine for her photo essay Estate Sales and in Landscape Stories magazine of Italy for her project Drive-in. Her work is held in numerous collections including the Yale University’s Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library and the Canadian based Magenta Foundation for Photography. Additionally, Loischild is a recent recipient of the City of Boston Arts Opportunity grant. Rachel teaches photography at Clark University and is the Assistant Professor of Visual Arts at Pine Manor College.
Not as of Yet: Stories of Aftermath and the Unknown
Not as of Yet: Stories of Aftermath and the Unknown quietly explores ideas of both literal aftermaths alongside surreal images of unknown circumstances, the ambiguous nature of these photographs offering the viewer space for their own serenity or anxieties. The combinations of these landscapes become representations of Rachel Loischild’s history and perturbations.
Not As of Yet started in 2011 after Hurricane Irene caused the Connecticut River to overflow its bounds flooding its low-lying banks. After the water receded, the river left its silt and clay clinging to all it touched. The destructive waters marking the flood line of about nine feet, visually desaturating the lower half of the world, destroying crops, homes and affecting all it touched, creating a surreal environment Loischild could not ignore – or fully understand.
In this work, Rachel aims to reinterpret the standard trope of the inviting bucolic large format landscape photography. Still drawing the viewer in visually, but instead of inviting the viewer to visit the awe-inspiring vista of a national park, she presents subtle unsettling views of what has happened, both real and imagined. These photographs meander from the aftermath of hurricanes to the settings of the Catholic church’s sex abuse, from visual mountains created in the building of a suburban mall to alien abduction, from the effects of floods to the venues of her childhood nightmares, from the disrupted terrain of new growth after a highway was rebuilt to the disquiet experienced as a woman when walking alone – the scheme of societal dangers imposing on one’s psyche. Altogether these images serve as quiet landscapes waiting for the viewer. This ongoing series of landscape-based photos shot on film with a 4×5 camera explores the emotional complexity of the history of these spaces.
To view more of Rachel’s work please visit her website.