Nolan Ryan Trowe in conversation with Ashley Gilbertson

Virtual event

Date

June 15, 2021
12:00–13:15PM EDT

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Photo by Nolan Ryan Trowe/ VII Mentor Program. April, 2020, United States; When I first became disabled, I hated everything about it: my body, my wheelchair, my braces, my catheters, wearing diapers, everything. I used to be ashamed of all of that. Now I see it all differently. Photographing myself helped me to embrace my new body and life in a way I never thought possible."

Almost five years ago, Nolan Ryan Trowe lost his ability to walk and to function as an able-bodied photographer. He became very aware that, as with most industries, the expectations of a professional photographer are constructed around an able-bodied experience. He asks, “Where does the disabled narrative fit in? How do those stories get told?”

With his colleague and friend Ashley Gilbertson, Nolan Ryan Trowe discusses working in the industry as a photographer with a disability. Having recently completed the VII Mentor Program, Nolan will show work produced for The New York Times and The Magnum Foundation while explaining why he thinks it is important to produce work that is important to you personally. During the past couple of years, Nolan has turned the camera on himself in order to examine what can be learned by personal narratives.

Photo by Nolan Ryan Trowe.

Nolan Ryan Trowe

USA
, California
Nolan Ryan Trowe is an American documentary photographer and filmmaker. His early work has focused primarily on disability and also explores themes such as family, masculinity, parenthood, sports, and human rights. His photography interrogates the underpinnings of society and aims to challenge the mainstream narratives that surround marginalized communities. Nolan’s approach to his subjects is informed by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and it is shaped by a dramatic shift in his view of the world when a spinal cord injury at the age of 23 left him disabled. Before he picked up a camera, he was a musician and writer.

Ashley Gilbertson

USA
, New York

Ashley Gilbertson is an Australian photographer and writer living in New York City widely recognized for his critical eye and unique approaches to social issues. Gilbertson is a member of the VII Agency, a frequent contributor to The New York Times, and a collaborator with the United Nations.

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