"The Ties That Bind"
Rituals and Memories We Call Family
Juror: Howard Christopherson
Photographer, Gallery Owner, and Master Framer. His photography has been shown in the USA, Japan and Italy,and published in art photography magazines including: B&W, COLOR, and ZOOM. He was awarded an Artist Initiative Grant in 2010 by the Minnesota State Arts Board. His photographs are in the The Minnesota Historical Society and several corporate and private collections.
Throughout the year, we turn our attention to spending time with our families, both near and far. The traditions of gathering together, sharing experiences, and doing our “family stuff” drives us to observe our legacy family rituals, and for many, share our spiritual. These yearly rituals often carry long established expectations, and our feelings can range from unabashed joy to abject dread.
All people share a universal truth; we each started with a mother and a father, and so did they. Whether these couplings are pre-ordained or random is debatable, but the biology is not. Out of this Nature moment follows the Nurture particulars, and that’s where the similarities mostly end.
So we don’t get to choose our family. It happens to us, and for the most part defines who we are.
We can choose our friends, but we are all gloriously stuck with our families. Loyalty to our family is a commitment that is often strained by reality. There are some in our family that we don’t particularly care for, and others that we love unconditionally, and would die for.
Luckily, family isn’t always blood. It’s the people in your life who want you in theirs; the ones who accept you for who you are. The ones who would do anything to see you smile, and who love you no matter what.
So please, show us your family!
Here are a few familiar quotations that may guide you when photographing or choosing your submissions:
“I smile because you are my brother…..I laugh because there is nothing you can do about it.”
“Everything is relative except relatives, and they are absolute.”
“You can’t choose your family….but you CAN choose to turn them in for the reward!”
“REMEMBER—as far as anyone knows—we are a nice, normal family.”