Stephen Berens

Stephen BerensArtist’s Statement

I make photographs because I am interested in photography’s indexical relationship to the world.

Questions central to my practice include: what does the world look like photographed? how does photography transform ordinary objects/situations into something worth looking at and thinking about? The desire to have my work engage issues beyond my aesthetic choices has led me to impose tight parameters onto projects and/or utilize systems to produce them. Moving counter to the contemporary trend of engulfing the viewer by producing very large-scale photographs, I attempt to surround the photographs’ subjects by producing numerous images of the same or similar situations or objects. I am more interested in what the viewer might think by looking at a series of related images than I am in what one particular image might look like.

Since 2000, I have produced 15 bodies of work, utilizing a very wide range of approaches that include:

  • Every Time I Answered My Door in 2007 (Some Portraits)
  • Nebraska: 40 Years After
  • 75 Pictures of a Lost Dog
  • 40 Views of Rome
  • Automatic Writing
  • Thinking about Pinturicchio (while looking out of Sol LeWitt’s Windows)



Select Solo Exhibitions from 2008-2012

Thinking of Pinturicchio (while looking out Sol LeWitt’s Windows), Carl Solway Gallery, Cincinnati

Of No Particular Interest (A Direct Comparison), site-specific installation, Los Angeles

Every Time I Answered My Door in 2007 (Some Portraits), Solway Jones, Los Angeles

75 Photographs of a Lost Dog, The Suburban, Oak Park, Ill.

Select Group Exhibitions from 2009-2012

10 Years LA @ Foundation Kaus Australis, The Prospectus, Los Angeles

Why Did the Chicken Cross the Road?, Yale School of Art, New Haven, Conn.

All Over the Map, Poor Farm, Manawa, Wis.

Altered Land, Photography in the 1970s, Sheldon Memorial Art Museum, Lincoln, Neb.

Fellowships and Awards

Nida Art Colony, artist residency, Nida, Lithuania

Durfee Artists’ Resource for Completion grant

Sol LeWitt Studio, Spoleto, Italy, June
Stichting Kaus Australis, artist residency, Rotterdam, Netherlands, May


M.F.A., 1977
Florida State University, Tallahassee

B.F.A., 1974
University of Nebraska, Lincoln