Man As Object: Reversing The Gaze

I just received the beautifully produced catalogue accompanying the exhibition, MAN AS OBJECT: REVERSING THE GAZE at the SOMArts Cultural Center, San Francisco, CA, (opening November 2011). Included in this historic catalogue of 194 artists presented by the National Women’s Caucus for Art (WCA) is an image of Frédéric Koenig which I photographed on the morning of the opening of my show, Beyond XY: Four Photographers Explore the Masculine Continuum, at the PHD Gallery in St Louis, MO.

“This exhibit marks an important development in feminist art” writes Brenda Oelbaum in the introduction because “… it comments on the prevelance of the male gaze in art and of the continued domination of male artists exhibiting in galleries and museums. My goal is to turn the tables and exhibit works that put the male in the position of subject and spectacle.”

Janice Nesser-Chu, the President of the National Women’s Caucus for Art, also wrote in the catalogue, “… women artists reverse the gaze and look back at man as object or desire and in doing so they assert their own power and control, not only over their subject but also over their own image and identity. The exhibition is not only about the work on the walls but is about empowerment.”

The description of my work is quoted on page 157:
“These images are part of an ongoing series of portraits that document my collaboration with Frédéric Koenig, who can so naturally appear both handsome and beautiful, both masculine and feminine. Wearing nothing more than spike heels, he provocatively poses in a gritty, industrial environment that reinforces a traditional male landscape. While his upper body exudes a masculine power, his raw and curvaceous physicality and his archetypal pin-up girl shoes challenge the viewer to explore how we perceive masculinity, sexuality and gender identity.”

Beyond XY: Inside the Abandoned Falstaff Brewery #2, 2010
20 x 30 inches, Archival Pigment Print.  Edition of 5.

“Becoming Who We Are” Exhibition

November 17 – December 19 2011
Opening Thursday November 17, 2011
6 PM – 9 PM, Gallery 32
Hudson Pride Connections Center
32 Jones St., Jersey City, NJ 07306
Gallery hours by appointment only

Trix Rosen, Project Director and Insight Out! Pride Workshop Participants
ARTIST TALK, Friday December 2, 2011
6 pm – 9 PM, Gallery 32
Hudson Pride Connections Center
32 Jones St., Jersey City, NJ 07306

You are cordially invited to “BECOMING WHO WE ARE,” a photo/video group exhibition featuring the work of Jasmin Brown, V. Michael Lazar, Nastasha Phoenix Russell, Joi-Elle White and Esteets Wright, participants in the InSIGHT OUT! Pride Digital Storytelling Workshop based at the Hudson Pride Connections Center. Their work is exhibited along with my own photos and those of my colleagues, international guest photography instructors Nadine Hutton (South Africa), and Frédéric Koenig (France).

The InSIGHT OUT! Digital Storytelling Workshops give a visual voice to participants growing up in environments of uncertainty, discrimination, fear and violence, and guide them to explore their creative vision. As they learn to document their own lives through photography, they grow in confidence and leadership skills, empower themselves and heal. This pilot workshop was tailored to LGBTQ participants and also designed to be a visual advocacy project.

The workshops at the Next Generation Center, Bronx, NY and NJ were developed and adapted from my experiences as senior trainer, editor and advisor to the international InSIGHT Out! Photography and Creative Exchange Project, based in Bangkok, Thailand.

Jersey City Artists Studio Tour – 2011

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Come on by and visit my studio during the Jersey City Artists Studio Tour
Saturday and Sunday – October 1st and 2nd
12 noon to 6 pm

Trix Rosen Photography Studio
124 Sherman Place (between Sanford Place and John F. Kennedy Blvd)
Jersey City, NJ 07307

While gender ambiguity and transformation have been the focus of my fine art photography, my career has also embraced the fields of photojournalism, portraiture and historic preservation architecture.


9-11 Revisited – Embodied Light Memory Block

Jewish Art Salon Exhibit “9-11”
The Educational Alliance in New York will feature the Jewish Art Salon’s 9-11 Window Installation at the Ernest Rubinstein Gallery, in concert with Tobi Kahn’s exhibit Embodied Light, 9-11 in 2011.

Exhibit dates: September 14 – November 23, 2011
Hours: Best viewed in daylight.
Location: Ernest Rubenstein Gallery Windows
Jefferson Street near East Broadway, New York, NY 10002. F-train to East Broadway; MTA buses: M9, M15, M22

Jewish Art Salon members have created “memory blocks”, with drawings, paintings or inscriptions that evoke their memory of the day.

On September 13th, 6pm these blocks will be brought to the gallery, where Tobi Kahn is exhibiting “Embodied Light: 9-11 in 2011”. Artists and writers will share their block and/or their memories of 9-11 and Kahn will discuss his exhibit. After the session, at 8pm, the blocks will be gathered and the next day they will be installed as “towers” in the windows.

Kahn’s exhibit will feature 220 memory blocks, handed out by him to various New Yorkers and returned to him with markings that commemorate the day. These blocks will be continually rearranged over the length of the exhibition. The Jewish Art Salon’s blocks will be displayed as a separate exhibit.

Go to Jail – The Essex County Penitentiary

The Main building of the Essex County Penitentiary stood alone on the hilltop, her battered façade illuminated by the setting sun. Five years earlier I had spent more than a month

systematically photographing the 32 acre jail complex as part of a required HABS (Historic American Buildings Survey) documentation before the institutional structures and outbuildings built between 1872 and 1929 could be demolished to make way for modern condominiums.

It was a cold December day in 2007 when I first walked through the dank prison in North Caldwell, New Jersey. The eerily silent jail complex appeared like a forbidding rusted ruin concealing deeply etched memories of its ghostly inhabitants within the walls.

My first job was to design a shot list that would become the basis for my final (107) 4” x 5” b/w film documentation. During my walk-through with architectural historian Ken Kalmis, I composed hundreds of digital images for reference.

The cell blocks, corridors, commissary kitchen, dining hall, holding pens and Power House were enormous spaces, and the light filtering through the oversize dirty and broken windows created a chiaroscuro effect on the floors and walls.
To capture the details, the patterns and textures in the highlights and shadows, and to tell the evocative story of each room was a challenge.

The solutions demanded a photojournalist’s insight to stay true to the narrative, lighting skills to creatively equate ambient light and fill flash, and knowledge of the guidelines for the long-term preservation of historic documentation.

On Tuesday, September 6, at 7:30pm, I will be presenting a slide show of images from my historic documentation of the Essex County Penitentiary at the Verona Historical Society. Local historian Robert Williams will guide you through the mysteries and legends associated with the buildings and property which were recently demolished. Numerous items salvaged from the buildings will be on display and prisoners will speak once again thru the tell-tale signs they left behind for us to find.

The meeting is scheduled at the Verona Community Center, 880 Bloomfield Ave., at 7:30 p.m. For more information you can email the Society at or call (973) 857-1968.

You will not want to miss this event–everyone is promised to leave with something to remember this important landmark and fully understand the contribution it made to our history.

Sunday July 24th – Dave and Paul Get Married, City Hall, New York

A week ago, Paul Teixiera and Dave Rimple, partners for 16 years, became one of the 484 gay and lesbian couples to marry at New York’s City Hall on July 24th 2011, the first day same-sex marriages became legal in New York State.

We started the morning taking family photos in their Chelsea apartment with Lucy, their Shiba Inu, and assembling all the legal documentation required for obtaining the license. Along with Denise, their best friend and witness, we headed downtown to City Hall to what would become four hours of cheering and heart-felt congratulations. The raucous outdoor line was snaking at a snail’s-pace in the summer heat while wedding vendors of every sort passed out cards, banners, flags, buttons and goody bags. There was a jubilant anticipation as we inched closer to City Hall and then into the greater mayhem inside the building where we waited for Dave and Paul’s number to be displayed.

I marveled at the extraordinarily diverse community of gays and lesbians of every age, from 20+ to 90+, representing a myriad of ethnicities, wearing unique costumes and combinations of formal and informal, masculine and feminine attire. All of us were gathered to participate and celebrate a momentous day in the history of civil rights in America, when it finally became legal for gays and lesbians in New York State to have the equal right to exchange life vows of love and commitment, witnessed by family and friends. My favorite poster… “26 years engaged. Married today. PROMISE KEPT.”

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In Honor of the NYS Marriage Equality Act

Congratulations to my GLBTQ friends who can now CHOOSE to get married in New York State. It is our turn to walk down the aisle of love in NY. In honor of the passage of the Marriage Equality Act, I’ve launched a new website  dedicated my gay and lesbian wedding photography:

I look forward to witnessing and photographing your ceremony.

Welcome to Trix’s Pix!

Welcome to my first blog post to Trix’s Pix.

My photography has been driven by a life-long desire to make a difference through projects that address vital social justice issues and have a positive and transformative effect on the world.

For over thirty-five years, my career has embraced the fields of fine art, photojournalism, portraiture and historic architectural preservation. With an instinct to find the story at the heart of every project, I look to the deeply etched memories in the stones and structures with the same passion that I look to the defining gesture and moment of truth in my portraits and documentary essays.

Compassion, respect and a generosity of spirit are essential components to creating tools of visual advocacy. Trix’s Pix will give a face to images that expand perceptions and boundaries as well as document time-worn sites to help preserve our cultural heritage.

Brooklyn – Heights

Brooklyn – Heights
June 3rd – July 1 2011

Distillery Gallery and Art Space
7 Hutton Street
Jersey City, NJ 07307

It was a bitterly cold December day in 2006 when I first walked through the Essex County Prison in North Caldwell, New Jersey. I had been hired to photograph over 100 4×5 film images of the Jail Annex complex (builit in the 1870’s), using the HABS (Historic American Buildings Survey) guidelines set up by the U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, before the 32-acre site was to be demolished. Although the sun was bright, the deserted prison complex appeared like a forbidding ruin with concealed memories etched deeply into the stone walls.

In the Distillery Gallery exhibition are two of these images that reveal unspoken stories about the buildings and the thousands of imprisoned, now ghostly inhabitants.

 Their presence is felt, not only in the discarded objects, graffiti drawings and magazine pin-ups that remained attached to the cell walls, but in the very essence of the structures themselves.

‘Don’t Tell Me What To Do’

‘Don’t Tell Me What To Do’
May 4th – May 28th 2011

Susan Maasch Fine Art Gallery
567 Congress Street
Portland ME 04101

“What would you show if you had no inhibitions? Do you have something that [is]… too personal? Too raw? Show us that image. If you could say ‘screw you, don’t tell me what to do…,’ what would it look like?” challenged Gallery Director, Susan Maasch and Photo Curator, Ryan S. Tirrell in the prospectus for the photography exhibition DON’T TELL ME WHAT TO DO.

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