Sarah Weiss has long admired the art of photography. In 2012 she completed her BFA from the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee with a concentration in photography. In Spring 2016, Weiss received her MFA from the Rochester Institute of Technology in New York. Weiss has worked in a variety of photography related jobs and exhibited her work in Saint Paul (MN), Rochester (NY), Milwaukee (WI), and China.
This body of photographic artwork, 7,223 Between, explores the physical and emotional distance between my immediate family. This resulting dispersion created a shift in both my understanding and experience, of family and home. The place that my family used to congregate around is now absent. These images traverse the surface of my relationships with family and speak to a universal experience of longing for family and home. Transient interior spaces, landscapes and, disconnected portraits of my parents come together in this non-linear narrative to suggest at the journey to rediscover a sense of Home while winding through nostalgic failures, desire for comfort and, the mental need to accept and escape.
I grew up in the Midwest in a middle-class area known for its strong family ties. Like many others, my parents got divorced when I was young separating our household in two. The Midwest created a sense of the ideal Home that was impossible to replicate, leaving me feeling like an outsider. I was not alone in this experience; divorce is now commonplace and Home which was a families central meeting point is now divided leaving the experience of Home lacking a totality that was once there. As a society, families are changing, and how we understand the family unit is not the same as it once was. The idea of Home is what sustained my own idealized notions of family, however, that changed as I have transitioned into adulthood. Since leaving my childhood home, my family has moved many times, I have watched them slowly and individually drift to different corners of the country. Over the course of the last nine years, I have traveled to visit my mother in Washington, my father in Illinois, my sister in Florida, and my brother in California. With each visit, we attempt to pack a year’s worth of time together in a few short days. The photographs in the series 7,223 Between depict both the distance and intimacy I experience within my family and express a deep longing for a type of connection we no longer share.
To view more of Sarah’s work please visit her website.