Rite of Ordinary: Interior Indiana by Rita E. Koehler
Rite of Ordinary: Interior Indiana is a conceptual, photographic documentary that examines the domestic lives of same-gendered couples living in Northern Indiana. The formal perspective of the portraits and the austere economy of the settings investigate how classical space can provide a stage to foreground the scenes of everyday life and how the built environment shapes our sense of self. The couples are placed along an axis, not to render them static, but to suggest a journey in time with a beginning, middle, and an end.
The portraits of these couples reveal more than mere facial expressions. They reveal bodies, furniture, wall decorations, and all the details and appurtenances of one’s identity. Through the assemblage of things that constitute a home, the images lead viewers to work, to speculate, and to challenge the current paradigm of “normal” regarding gender, sexuality, love, home, family, and relationships. The context of where these photographs are taken and how they are being exhibited in public spaces foreground the political stakes for these couples whose lives have had to bear a level of invisibility.
Rita E. Koeher lives and works in South Bend, Indiana.
To view more of Rita's work, please visit her website.