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Juror Statement: Living & Photographing in the Time of COVID-19

First, I would like to say that it was an honor to be asked to jury this show. I loved the variety of approaches and reactions to the lockdown. From introspective, quirky, sad, joyous, to poignant, surreal, and heartbreaking, the entries represent a great range of expression.

Most juror statements state how difficult it was to choose the top awardees. My experience was no different, and that’s how it should be. I’m glad that Donna structured the showcase in such a way that we are able to include more of the work in a printed catalog, and even more in the online gallery.
In the end, images which stayed with me the most speak of the elderly dying in isolation
away from their loved ones, health professionals and other essential workers who must
work in close proximity to others despite the risks to themselves and their families, and the suddenly ubiquitous zoom birthday, a welcome but woefully inadequate stand-in for the real thing.

Here’s to creating community, and continually figuring out how to connect, and help
support one another.

Philipp Scholz Rittermann, May 2020


Rittermann’s photographic practice plays at the intersection of the human gaze, the passage of time, and memory. His images reveal hidden layers of the world at large. Subject matter ranges from moody European nocturnes, to overwhelming industrial panoramas in China, to rugged landscapes in the Americas. Born in 1955, Rittermann was raised in Lima, Perú, moving to Germany in 1969. There he co-founded a photography gallery and taught photography. In 1982 he emigrated to the United States. His photographs are included in more than 100 public, private, and corporate collections, from The Museum of Modern Art, New York to the Bibliothèque Nationale de France in Paris. A mid-career survey of Rittermann’s work was held at the Museum of Photographic Arts San Diego, and a solo exhibition of Emperor’s River was presented at the museum of Contemporary Art San Diego. He has been teaching photography in the United States and abroad for more than four decades. He lives and works in Southern California.

Windmills, Desert Hot Springs, CA, USA, 2019Trailhead, Capitol Reef, UT, USA, 2019