Connect
To Top

Daily Inspiration: Meet Stan Strembicki

Today we’d like to introduce you to Stan Strembicki.

Hi Stan, we’re thrilled to have a chance to learn your story today. So, before we get into specifics, maybe you can briefly walk us through how you got to where you are today?
I am the eldest son of a first-generation Eastern European family from Rhode Island and was raised with a fairly rigorous religious background in the Ukrainian Orthodox church and even had a scholarship to the seminary (which I passed on). I actually started in University as a technical theater major at the University of Rhode Island and took a photo elective with a professor (Bart Parker) that ended up being a lifelong mentor and friend. I switched majors and the rest was history. This has always reminded me that at any point in your life, you can meet that one person who can change the direction of your life. I attended graduate school in Los Angles at CalArts and was lucky enough to get a full-time teaching position in the New Haven area right out of school. After five years in Conn. I was offered the position of head of the photography program at Washington University in the School of Art where I taught for 36 years, I retired two years ago and I am now an emeritus professor and full-time artists. Being outside of the academic world is actually very freeing, projects now take as little or as much time as they need and I think I’m more productive now than ever and doing some of the best work of my artistic career.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
The photographic fine art field is a pretty crowed one and it’s never been easy to promote yourself, especially if you have a “day” job and a family. You end up making choices as to how good a husband and father you want to be and how good a teacher to your students or just how “famous” do you want to be. For me, I was more focused on being as good a teacher as I could be and sharing parenting with my wife. It takes a lot of effort and self-promotion to get to that point and the people that do make it really work hard toward that often to the exclusion of everything else in their life. No one gets “discovered” anymore, as an artist you have to make that happen for yourself.

As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about what you do?
Photography is the perfect field for someone like me with a touch of ADD. I have a lot of portfolios in the works at any given time. I have photographed the past 29 Mardi Gras’s in New Orleans, but thats only two weeks of the year. I’ve photographed in Italy 14 times now, I have a large portfolio of images from the New England coastline, I did a 15 year five part documentary project Post Katrina in New Orleans, spent three years on a multiple exposure/collage project and every summer, I do a big portrait project at my studio. The range of my investigation into the media of photography is what sets me apart from other photographers but its also been a problem for me promoting my work. Curators and gallery owners often want to put a tag on you that you are “the landscape guy” or that you’re the “documentary guy”. I am pretty curious about the human experience and understand the world around me via my work. At any given time, I’m working on two or three very different portfolios. Actually, deciding on what work to show you took a while to figure out. My work can be found in collections and on display on all seven continents, yes, even Antarctica.

Have you learned any interesting or important lessons due to the Covid-19 Crisis?
During the lockdown, I dug into my archives. Being a photographer, you have for the most part, freeze dried all the raw material of your life work. I never throw anything away or delete images. I have in my studio at home more than 10,000 rolls of film in my archive and close to 750,000 unique digital images. While you’re in the middle of a project, you often overlook some great stuff, having a lot of time to go back into older works, even work from the 1970’s is a learning experience that few other mediums allow. So I did a lot of looking and a lot of printing. The print is the final statement for a photographer, the negative or the raw digital file is as Ansel Adams said score, the print is the performance.

Pricing:

  • 8×10 prints $75.00
  • 11×14 prints $125.00
  • 17×24 prints $500.00
  • 30×40 prints $750.00
  • 40×60 prints $1,000

Contact Info:

Image Credits
Personal photo of me is by Aimee Tomasek

Suggest a Story: VoyageSTL is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

More in Uncategorized