A photobook of Robin Schwartz's ongoing series with her daughter Amelia.
Amelia Paul Forman is fifteen years old. In many ways, she is your average American teenager. However, not every teenager has a mom who is a world-class photographer with a predilection for photographing animals, and not every teenager has portraits of herself with elephants, llamas, ponies, tigers, kangaroos, chimpanzees, endless dogs, cats, and other animals—portraits that hang in the collections of art museums around the world. Since she was three years old, Amelia has been her mother’s muse and the subject of her photographs.
Her mother, the photographer Robin Schwartz, has been working for twelve years on this ongoing collaborative series, dedicated to documenting her and Amelia’s adventures among the animals. As Amelia has gotten older, she’s become a more active participant. “She didn’t realize how unusual her encounters were until everyone started to tell her how lucky she was to meet so many animals,” says Robin. Amelia now contributes ideas for their shoots, and the images have become more experimental through their mother-daughter collaboration.
The resulting photographs are more than documents of Amelia and her rapport with animals. They offer a meditation on the nature of interspecies communication and serve as evidence of a shared mother-daughter journey into invented worlds, of fables they enact together.
As Robin says, “Photography gives us the opportunity to access our dreams—to discover the extraordinary.”