"Making photographs that describe human connection is the least difficult part of my artistic mission. The challenge lies in presenting the work imaginatively and provocatively; to bring an audience to a new understanding of that love."
Lori Waselchuk's (b. 1964) photographs of post-Katrina New Orleans and the hospice at Angola Prison in Louisiana bring us into intimate contact with these complex subjects. Captivated at an early age by news photos in LIFE magazine, Waselchuk's work is project-based and interactive; she engages in conversation and collaboration with the people she photographs, which often leads to new and unexpected artistic directions. Grace Before Dying, her photographic documentary about the Louisiana prison hospice, generated a publication and a traveling exhibition that showed in prisons and public spaces in Philadelphia; Boise, ID; Washington, DC; and elsewhere. Waselchuk's images have appeared in magazines and newspapers worldwide, including Newsweek, Time, LIFE, the New York Times, and the Los Angeles Times. In 2013, she received a Leeway Transformation Award from the Leeway Foundation.
With support from the Center, Waselchuk attended a National Press Photographers Association multimedia immersion workshop in May 2013, in order to learn new skills in this area. She is currently interviewing and photographing block captains in various Philadelphia neighborhoods for a new portrait and multimedia project, Them That Do, that reveals the individual and shared histories of the city's diverse citizenry. In the spring of 2014, Waselchuk was featured in a photography exhibition at the Mainline Art Center in Haverford, PA: Humankind, which focused on social responsibility, portraiture, and the photo essay.