kristin anderson, finalist of the may 2017 edition

Kristin lives in Alameda, California, part of the San Francisco Bay area. She has an M.F.A. in Photography and worked for a number of years as a teacher and exhibiting artist. After her children were born, Kristin supported her family by working in the field of design, and currently works as a User Experience Designer as she continues a number of ongoing art projects, including this one.

Project Statement, The Uninvited Guest

In 2001, Kristin's son Jackson was born. Her photographs at the time were motivated by the standard parental impulse to record their child as he grew and flourished. As time passed, they realized that an uninvited guest had joined their family - autism. Kristin's photographs took on a different meaning as they struggled with the challenges of this diagnosis.

Photographs of Jackson became clues to his behavior before a diagnosis was reached, then a way for Kristin to make sense of what was happening to him and to them. Because he is non-verbal, it was her attempt to communicate and form a bond, and to see who he is beyond what he can say. Photographs were part of the expansion of my understanding of what it means to be human.

Kristin is now working to combine these, other, and future photographs into an artist’s book, accompanied by text.