lauren e. simonutii (1968-2012)
It is with great grief, a heavy heart and profound disbelief that I find myself writing this email to let you know that Lauren passed away last week due to complications from her illness. As many of you know, I found Lauren’s work to be the most honest photography I have ever seen. She gained my respect instantly, as she welcomed me into her home, where she created small intricate tableaus that invited the viewer into her imaginary world, laying bare her fears, hopes and pain.
Through her photography, Lauren gave a voice to those that suffer in isolation. Her life mattered, and her legacy has yet to be written. She will forever be in my heart, and while she may have felt alone, she always believed that her photographs would be her lasting memory – the one gift she would leave.
My heart goes out to her family and the people whose lives she touched. She was a brilliant writer, with great clarity. She wrote often about her struggles, and it would only be fitting to give Lauren the last words:
Sometimes the difference between living and dying is just a little bit.
Sometimes the difference between living and dying is just a sigh.
Over (five) years I have spent alone amidst these 8 rooms, 7 mirrors, 6 clocks, 2 minds and 199 panes of glass. And this is what I saw here. This is what I learned. I figure it could go one of two ways- I will either capture my ascension from madness to as much a level of sanity for which one of my composition could hope, or I will leave a document of it all, in the case that I should lose. — Lauren E. Simonutti