Photography West Gallery

Women's Photography Alcove

Joyce Tenneson

Portrait of Joyce Tenneson with her camera by Mary Dowling


Joyce Tenneson - Suzanne and Wreath

Suzanne and Wreath, 1991

Joyce Tenneson

1945 -

About the Photographer

Joyce Tenneson is considered among the ten most influential women photographers in the history of photography. Her luminous and unique 20x24 inch Polaroid, Ilfochrome and vintage gelatin silver prints emanate a poignant mystical sensibility. Her signature-style images aim to show the inner person hovering behind the facade: "I want to allow others to reveal and celebrate aspects of themselves that are usually hidden. My camera is a witness. It holds a light up for my subjects to help them feel their own essence, and gives them the courage to collaborate in recording these revelations," says Tenneson.

In her 20s, Tenneson explored the autobiographical aspects of her photography by taking hundreds of self-portraits. Since then, her work has beome more metaphoral, reflecting her inner journey. The first fifteen years of this journey was spent as an art school instructor in Washington D.C., during which time she published two books and had many international exhibitions. In the mid-1980s, Tenneson moved from Washington D.C. to New York and launched a highly renowned career.

Tenneson's photography has been shown in over 150 exhibitions worldwide, and is included in numerous private and museum collections. She is the recipient of many awards, including the International Center of Photography's Infinity Award for best applied photography. In addition, she has been named "Photographer of the Year" by the international organization, Women in Photography. Her photographs have appeared on countess magazine covers, including Time, Life, Entertainment Weekly, Newsweek, Premiere, Esquire and The New York Times Magazine. She is the author of thirteen books, her latest, entitled "Joyce Tenneson: A Life in Photography," was published in 2008. Joyce lives and works in New York City.

"People are the center of my work and I'll always be interested in their inner life. It's what's below the surface that continues to fascinate me." - Joyce Tenneson.

Joyce Tenneson - Original Cibachrome Photographs

Joyce Tenneson - Vintage Black and White Photographs

Joyce Tenneson - Original Polaroid Photographs

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