Photography historian and Minnesota native George Slade mines the archives of the Minnesota Historical Society to create a highly personal and idiosyncratic exploration of the state and, more broadly, of the experience of place and home as conveyed through photographs. Slade’s early photographic education came through his father’s slide shows, endlessly fascinating events in which his parents’ travels would merge with their home life under his father’s wry narrations. In the 1980s, Slade’s work as a photographer segued into a passion for reading meaning and implication in other people’s work—a practice informed and inspired by his first-hand knowledge of the challenge of translating experience into image. In this book, Slade focuses on 100 photographs drawn from the Minnesota Historical Society’s collection, reading these images for what they reveal about life in Minnesota and how photographers have encountered and interpreted their experiences there.
George Slade is the past artistic director of the Minnesota Center for Photography and the program director for the Minnesota Center for Photography/McKnight Foundation Artist Fellowships for Photographers. He has been an adjunct assistant curator in the Department of Photographs at the Minneapolis Institute of the Arts, and the curator and program manager of the Photographic Resource Center at Boston University. He was the editor of and a contributor to the Public Art Review issue “Multifaceted Lens: Photography and Public Art.” He contributes to his blog re:photographica as well as numerous other online publications; in print, he has written essays for many exhibition catalogues and monographs, and is a regular contributor to Minnesota History magazine. He was also the editor of and a contributor to Minnesota in Our Time: A Photographic Portrait (Minnesota Historical Society Press, 2000).