Prints of most of these images are available for purchase. Please inquire.All photographs are the copyright of the individual artists and may not be reproduced without their permission.
The images presented here honor and celebrate refuge, spirituality, peace: sanctuary. In a time when so many of us feel unsafe, these images are a little beacon of beauty and hope. And, there are other layers of meaning here. Beyond the image content, the creative practice itself can be thought of as a sanctuary. As I viewed the submitted images, I got the sense that many of the photographers consider their practice a “safe space”—a space to experiment, to give voice to issues they care about, to create the world they’d like to live in. I was most drawn to images that expressed the theme with a depth of emotion and a very fine attention to form. As photographer/philosopher Robert Adams once said, form is beautiful because it gives us the sense that the world transcends chaos. What better way to express our them? Sanctuaries help us transcend chaos, after all. As I write this, I’m in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. You can’t help being keenly aware of the power of sanctuary in this city. Synagogues, mosques, and Catholic churches sit amid bombed-out buildings and bullet-strafed facades. Everyone over 30 carries significant war trauma. And yet, there’s peace and beauty close at hand, just as there is in most places, if we only shift our attention to see it. I want to thank the photographers who submitted their lovely work to this exhibition, for helping us see the world in this way.
Laura Valenti is the founder of Light Atlas Creative, an online platform for transformative photography education. She teaches interactive e-courses, supports emerging photographers in her creative mentoring program, speaks to photo groups, and curates exhibitions for galleries and photo festivals around the world. At core, her work is about helping photographers find their true voice as artists, so they can make their most personal, meaningful, and wholehearted work.
Laura has been a photographer, curator, arts director, and educator for about 20 years. She worked for 15 years in the nonprofit art world, most recently as Outreach Director at Photolucida – an organization that works to build connections between photographers and the gallery and publishing worlds. Before that, she was Program Director and co-Curator at Newspace Center for Photography, where she also taught black-and-white darkroom. She often serves as a professional reviewer at various portfolio review events, where she helps photographers fine-tune their vision and promote their work with more confidence.
A place of refuge and peace: Shelter, haven, retreat, hideaway, asylum, sanctum, wilderness, cloister, refuge.
A cozy living room, a child in mother's arms, a magical spot in the woods where animals tread.
What is your own notion of of "sanctuary"? All capture methods and processes are welcome.
We are very pleased to welcome Laura Valenti as juror for Sanctuary. She will select up to 35 images for exhibition in our Middlebury, Vermont gallery, and up to 40 more for our permanent online gallery. The recipients of the Juror’s Award and Director’s Award will each be entitled to a portfolio review with Ms. Valenti.
Information about our printing service and free matting and framing here.