/18 Family

Sage Sohier


This is a series about my mother as she ages, and my relationship with her, that I began to work on in a concerted way in 2000. For a brief period in her youth, my mother was a model, photographed by Richard Avedon and Irving Penn, and once on the cover of LIFE Magazine. As a child, I grew up as a witness to her beauty: I used to lie on her bed, with the dogs, and watch her try on clothes and study herself critically in the mirror. As I grew older, there was no use competing with her, and so I assumed my position, quite happily, on the other side of the camera. I became even more interested in photographing her when age began to challenge her air of timeless perfection, making it––to me––all the more poignant. So, this is about the aging family: how some things never change, and others, inevitably, do. Some of these pictures are re-creations of old family snapshots from my childhood. Most are collaborative, made on a tripod with a self-timer, after discussion with my mother and sister.