Suzanne Opton is the recipient of a 2009 Guggenheim Fellowship. Her soldier portraits, icons of the aftermath of the current wars, have been presented as billboards in eight American cities, and have sparked a passionate debate about issues of art and soldiering. The conversation continues on the blog at www.SoldiersFace.com.
Suzanne is a self-taught photographer who studied philosophy and has been influenced by performance art and the monochrome paintings of James Sprouse. Suzanne's work lives on the edge between documentary and conceptual. She often asks a simple performance from her subjects as a means of illustrating their circumstances.
Suzanne photographs are included in the permanent collections of the Brooklyn Museum, Cleveland Museum, Fotomuseum Winterthur, Library of Congress, Musee de l'Eysee, Lausanne, Museum of Fine Arts Houston, and Portland Art Museum, Suzanne has received grants from the NEA, NYFA, and Vermont Council on the Arts. She teaches at the International Center of Photography.
Who are the men and women who volunteer to fight in America's wars, and what do they look like after their first tours of duty? Photographerprovides some uncomfortably intimate portraits, and tells her story about this controversial work in an exclusive audio interview with Lens Culture.