Elinor Carucci Interview

Elinor Carucci has become synonymous with the private turned public.  Her revealing and intimate images of motherhood make a family album that subverts the cliché.  Born in Israel and currently living in New York, Carucci’s work has graced the establishments of MoMA, Houston Museum of Fine Art and has been featured in the New York Times and Aperture.  Her awards list includes the International Centre of Photography’s Infinity Award for Young Photographer and she was generous enough to answer the questions that trouble me every day.

SB: Obviously children come first, but as a photographer sometimes photography has to come first.  How do you manage to strike this balance as a committed mother and a professional and serious photographer?

EC:  It is tough and requires a lot of hard work, and managing my time well. I decided to devote all my time only to the children and work.  I had to give up my social life entirely until the kids are a little older, and other things.  I just make my life about those two really major things.

In what ways do you think these two ‘jobs’ work well together? And what is the biggest difficulty in making it work?

You have to REALLY love those two jobs and have the motivation to find the energy to do both.  The biggest difficulty is making sure I get enough sleep… if I do, then everything feels more possible.

As a mother, my children are good at helping me to see things differently.  How does your role of being a mother help your creativity?

I feel that as a mother the realization of how short our time is in this life gets much stronger and clearer, and makes me feel like I need to say what is really important to me right now.   Also, everything feels 10 times stronger…the love, the worry, the notion of time, the pain, the compassion…so there are much more emotions to put into my work…and this is a good thing!