Beautiful My Desire – Sarah Christianson


7:51pm, Christianson Farm, October 2008


Entryway, June 2008

About Homeplace –

“The search for homeplace is the mythical search for the axis mundi, for a center, for some place to stand, for something to hang on to.” -Lucy Lippard, from The Lure of the Local

For me, home is a 1200-acre farm in the Red River Valley of North Dakota. Its original 160 acres were homesteaded in 1884 by my great-great grandfather. My parents are the fourth, and last, consecutive generation to work our land, as my siblings and I have all moved away to pursue other careers. These circumstances, and the realization that I was part of a larger rural exodus, provided me with the impetus to document our farm at this critical junction. I combine my images with materials from my family’s archive to create a rich, multi-layered narrative about family tradition, agriculture, emigration, and the passage of time. Homeplace is my contribution to the farm’s palimpsest, and it is a document that will provide evidence of its story to future generations.


Rain (Section 23)


Highland Lutheran Cemetery, Cummings, ND, 2007

About Sarah –

Sarah Christianson (b. 1982) is a photographic artist. She grew up on a four-generation family farm near Cummings, North Dakota. Immersed in that vast expanse of the Great Plains, she developed a strong affinity for the landscape and the stories it contains. This experience has had a profound effect on her work, as she enjoys creating narratives about place and personal experience through time, historical research, and the landscape. Her work has been exhibited internationally and can be found in the collections of several institutions in the Midwest and the National Museum of Photography in Copenhagen, Denmark. She received a BFA in photography from Minnesota State University Moorhead in 2005 and an MFA in photography from the University of Minnesota in 2009. Since then, Christianson has been living in San Francisco, where she teaches photography at City College of San Francisco, volunteers at RayKo Photo Center, and remains an active member of the Society for Photographic Education. Her first book Homeplace will be published by Daylight in 2013.


Barn, Former Anderson-Christianson Farm, 2006

To see more of Sarah’s beautiful work log onto her website.

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