Kris Brownlee.
#ritakoehler #NASA #Jazz

“Gentleman in Blue Gingham,” (Amtrak series), 2010.

I’d like to thank you all for joining me this week. It was my great pleasure to share with you a few examples of my work. Equally, I’d like to thank Chicago Women in Photography for the opportunity to host their site for the week. If you enjoyed my work, please consider following me @rita_koehler and at ritakoehler.com. Be well.

#ritakoehler #chicagowomeninphotography #Amtrak #Waypoints #politics #portraiture #portraitphotography #regionalism #grid #train #photojournalism #american #documentary #americanlandscape @spenational @medium

Journey home after sitting shiva. “Untitled”, (Amtrak: Waypoints), 2010. “Train travel has a long history in America as being an important artery that links ordinary persons and communities across the country. Among other things, transportation by rail has kept very small rural towns from dying away by isolation. It also has kept in plain view the landscape of an American culture that air travel removed in its haste to get us from point A to Z in the least amount of time possible for productivity’s sake. Train culture has also had its place as subject matter in a long history of photographic study exploring portraiture, photojournalism, and the genre of documentary. It has proved a rich canvas to tell us of the American landscape. Train travel seems to honor the waypoints rather than the known beginning or the anticipated and expected end. Those waypoints, the people, places, and time that help navigate us towards a deeper connection to who we are, are most compelling to me.” - @rita_koehler, Artist Statement. Follow me as I host CWIP feed this week.

#ritakoehler #chicagowomeninphotography #Amtrak #Waypoints #politics #portraiture #portraitphotography #shiva #regionalism #grid #train #photojournalism #american #documentary #americanlandscape @spenational @medium

“Untitled,”(Kevin and Todd), 2011. Rite of Ordinary Series.

There’s a purpose in all the elements of my works. Every detail is important even in my austerity and two-dimensional choices. So much of my venture into stillness and keeping the cacophony of the world at bay becomes hours of preparation for one single work that exists alone and in a series. Each continues to live its own organic development outside of time and politics. It’s why I’m able to continue creating. I can let go of pieces, and let them venture beyond my own conscious mind.

I’m @Rita_Koehler, and this is day 5 of hosting the CWIP feed for the week. If you missed my previous posts, click on the CWIP icon for more on the site.
#ritakoehler #chicagowomeninphotography #riteofordinary #lgbt #lgbtq #equality #sensusfidelium #politics #gay #portraiture #portraitphotography #regionalism #grid #visualart #visualstudies @spelgbtq @medium

“Untitled,(Emmanuel). Xenia Series, 2016.
I so prefer to write when I post, but I’ve been traveling today, and afraid if I linger too much longer the day will be spent and the opportunity for today’s post gone. Today was a day of reconnecting with the network of women who make up this group, Chicago Women In Photography. We are diverse in our person, our making, and our development. That said, commonly we will find someone else has made images around a similar subject matter. Today I met a third person who has work around the shared theme of nuns or religious women. #Womenartists have a wealth of portraits around strong women of power and humility.
I’m @Rita_Koehler, hosting the CWIP feed this week. For more, go to www.ritakoehler.com.
#ritakoehler #chicagowomeninphotography #politics #women #religiouswomen #nuns #portraiture #portraitphotography #anytoolwilldo #regionalism #documentary @medium @spenational

“Untitled “,(Jon and Rob). 2010.
From my series Rite of Ordinary. Happy Sunday, Everyone! @rita_koehler
#ritakoehler #chicagowomeninphotography #politics #portraiture #portraitphotography #regionalism #grid #lgbtq #lgbt @spelgbtq

“Untitled,” (Wabash, IN). January, 2018.

When saying “no” takes you somewhere.

To find out more, follow me this week as I host the Chicago Women in Photography feed at: @chicagowomeninphotography.
#ritakoehler #chicagowomeninphotography #politics #portraiture #portraitphotography #anytoolwilldo #mobilephotography #regionalism #grid

“Untitled,”(Wabash, IN). January 2018.

I still find myself wanting to say “no” to much. Most of the work I do, starts with “no.” I’m not sure what that says about me as artist other than I know a thousand ways in which I don’t want to go with my work. We constantly tell ourselves we should do “that one thing” this way and “that other thing” that way, but I tell you it is an unbearable noise that only defeat can silence sometimes. I left my work to run a congressional campaign and carried only my cell phone and laptop with me as communication tools. I was torn at times wanting to be there in the capacity of photographer rather than campaign manager, but had to fight that temptation and instead had to discipline myself to listen without capture. Occasionally, however, the image was too poignant.
I traveled everywhere Pat Hackett for Congress went on the campaign trail. It’s not a requirement of the campaign manager, in fact, many do not, but candidates will often have several staff with them for various reasons. Initially, it was just me—partly out of necessity and partly because we felt it was important I go as Pat’s spouse as much as campaign manager. We wanted those voters in the furthest reaches of the reddest part of our ten-county district to see me, meet me, and have a chance to talk with me from the very beginning. We would jump into the deep end and go from there. What we found was that people in these rural areas couldn’t care less that Pat was married to a woman, although they did warmly welcome me. Instead, they were most interested in what Pat brought to the conversation. Voters felt dejected by the policies of this administration. As Pat discussed the realities of the recently passed GOP tax bill, voters expressed their anger, worry, and a sense of dread as to what was next.
I’m @Rita_Koehler, hosting the CWIP feed for the next week. For more, go to www.ritakoehler.com.
#ritakoehler #chicagowomeninphotography #politics #portraiture #portraitphotography #anytoolwilldo #mobilephotography #regionalism #grid @medium @spenational

Wondering where I’ve been? What’s next? Head on over to @chicagowomeninphotography and follow me as I host the Chicago Women in Photography Instagram feed for the next week, and talk about discipline, defeat, and the prophetic imagination. “Untitled,”(Evelyn), Xenia Series, 2015.
#ritakoehler #chicagowomeninphotography #Xenia #religiouswomen #sensusfidelium #hospitality #politics #portraiture #portraitphotography #anytoolwilldo #regionalism #grid #propheticimagination

“Untitled,”(Evelyn), Xenia Series, 2015.

Good morning. My name is Rita Koehler and I am one of those visual artists, writers who entrenches herself into a subject and then retreats—sometimes out of self-preservation or necessity, or because sometimes, like the magical Mary Poppins, I find the wind has changed directions. Always I remain faithful to the principles of why I make and examine art, or why I put down my tools in defiance of my own struggle to fit into a place or moment that is not of me.
One such temporary withdrawal began nine months ago when these unsettling times brought my spouse to the decision to run for US Congress. She is a self-proclaimed “Roosevelt Democrat in the 21st Century who believes Johnson’s War on Poverty is still worth fighting.” I can recite these words by heart having managed her congressional campaign for all these months. She did not win her primary, but together we pulled the idea of politician from “pay to play,” retiring politics as usual, to an awe-inspiring People’s Campaign of dignity and justice for all.

As I sit here now in my living room post primary amongst the plastic santas, silver garland and bright colored ornaments that still have yet to be boxed away from Christmas five months ago, I think of the project, “Xenia,” that I began in 2015. These women often moved fluidly and necessarily from engagement to retreat constantly examining their motivations and purpose. I look forward with great respect, and hopefully humility, to picking up my tools again and to continue telling the story of these vowed religious women who took on the patriarchy of the Roman Catholic Church in the 20th Century, and moved us joyfully and bravely into the 21st Century where the prophetic Sensus Fidelium is upheld by the Spirit of truth. Again, my name is @rita_koehler, and I’ll be taking over the CWIP feed for the week. I’m happy to be in conversation with you once again or maybe for the first time. Either way, I hope you’ll join me.
#ritakoehler #chicagowomeninphotography #Xenia #religiouswomen #sensusfidelium #hospitality #politics #portraiture #portraitphotography #anytoolwilldo #regionalism #grid @medium

Late Spring in Indiana. #ritakoehler #2018

So many watched pots.
#ritakoehler 2018

People in this community inspire with their character and right actions, their commitment to virtue. Honored, hopeful for all the goodness we receive/d, offer/ed, promote/d. People are good, smart, sophisticated. We’ve only just begun. #ritakoehler #wethepeople #dignityandjusticeforall #everypersonmatters #lovewins #pathackett

#ritakoehler 2018

Perennial Galaxy, 2017.
Floating in my own daily universe.
#ritakoehler @stephenellcock #photographer #art #eternal #horizon

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