Katherine Finkelstein
Artist in Residence


Katherine Finkelstein is a photographer based in New York. Her current projects follow two trajectories. Her Spirit Ditties series works with layered photograms and prisms and an intuitive darkroom alchemy. This work explores the photographic process itself, as a medium which navigates between material and immaterial realities via memory and time.

On the tenth anniversary of her sister’s disappearance, Finkelstein took photographs and gathered material on the sacred mountain of Monteluco, near Spoleto, and on a trip to La Spiaggia delle Due Sorelle (The Beach of the Two Sisters). She then combined these materials and printed them at Pioneer Works in New York before exhibiting them on Governors Island (see above for two images from this series).

Invited by Spoleto curator and artist Franco Troiani / Studio A’87, Finkelstein had an exhibition in the roadside chapel Museo Madonna del Pozzo. She installed a film called FLAMES, 2019 (12’17” video loop) which shows the abstracted light from two flickering candles intersecting with one another (installation photo, below).

Additionally, Finkelstein is working with the genre of landscape photography. She describes her ongoing series America as an investigation into “scale and human perception, deep time, architecture, environment and the sublime.” Below are a series of images taken during her residency and exhibited as part of an Open Studios exhibition. They take up many of the themes of her America project, but in the context of Spoleto and its various landscapes.

In a sense, we all are crashing to our death from the top story of our birth to the flat stones of the churchyard and wondering with an immortal Alice in Wonderland at the patterns of the passing wall. This capacity to wonder at trifles—no matter the imminent peril—these asides of the spirit, these footnotes in the volume of life are the highest forms of consciousness, and it is in this childishly speculative state of mind, so different from common sense and its logic, that we know the world to be good.

Vladimir Nabokov, Lectures on Literature