Photographs of New Mexicans spanning 20 years

Review of “Taos Portraits: Photos by Paul O’Connor.”

  • Gray Mercer

    Paul O'Connor
  • Patricia Sanford

    Paul O'Connor
  • Ron Cooper

    Paul O'Connor
 

Taos Portraits: Photos by  Paul O’Connor.
144 pages, hardcover.
$100.
Hondo Mesa Press, 2012.

Photographer Paul O’Connor has never seen himself as an “official portraitist,” he says; that requires a complex, formal and often impersonal setting at odds with the intimacy he seeks with his subjects. “I consider a portrait to be a collaboration,” he writes. “It’s not a matter of ‘let me take your picture,’ but something we create together.”

Taos Portraits showcases O’Connor’s quest to capture the members of Taos’s vibrant artistic community — the painters, sculptors and writers whose lives intersect at the local studios and galleries. The images span more than 20 years and are accompanied by lively anecdotes from the subjects’ families, friends and journalists. O’Connor’s portraits testify to the deep relationship he cultivated with the people he photographed and his determination to portray them in the context of their daily lives.