Fifteen Years: 9/11
Portrait of an Athlete
The great advances women have made in the past 100 years include those within the realm of fitness. I photographed my sister, Maureen Triller of Houston, TX to exemplify today’s female athlete. Captured here competing in an international fitness competition in Miami in February 2020, she states, “Through fitness I can prove to myself that I am stronger and more powerful than I ever thought I could be. This translates into every aspect of my life”.
Maureen’s strength, stamina and endurance - not to mention confidence and determination, are clearly visible in these photographs. Through the lens of my camera I saw my sister in a way I never had before.
(I am proud to have images from this series included in A Yellow Rose Project. Over 100 women across the US were invited to join in this major photographic collaboration in which they were asked to make work in response, reflection, or reaction to the ratification of the19th Amendment. Co-founded by Meg Griffiths and Frances Jakubek.)
To experience Fremantle Prison today is to be transported to a dark time in Australia’s history. Conceived for British convicts in 1855, the prison later housed local convicts. Poor treatment was the norm - a bucket served as a toilet. A riot took place where prisoners took guards hostage. Over 40 hangings occurred in the gallows.
The cell blocks changed over time, from solitary cells void of furnishings to recent decades when TVs were allowed and murals painted by inmates transformed their spaces. Still, brutal winters, poor diet and the drudgery of daily labor continued. Massive nets were hung below the cell blocks for a reason.
Fremantle remained functioning until 1991. No indoor pluming was installed. The bucket endured. My photographs can only tell a minute part of the story; the saga of endless lives whose voices and footsteps echo through its sorry halls to this day.
Sculptor Henry Moore once stated (something like this…) that an individual is easily recognized at a distance by their form - not by one’s eye color or the curl of their lip - rather, it is one’s unique form and attitude of that form, that reveals their identity at a glance, long before facial details and distinctive mien greet the viewer’s eye.
The nuts and bolts of it is this…when we travel together, Miguel slices in and out of my frame. This is bound to happen since he walks much faster than I do, and often winds up far ahead of me. Stopping constantly to photograph something or someone, I trail behind.
I’ve come to use this to my advantage, allowing his solitary figure to punctuate the scene before me. No matter the distance between us,
I recognize Miguel, Henry Moore - style. Though the images of him I have created present a mysterious Everyman, to me they remain uniquely personal portraits of the man I share my life with.
I’ve always photographed my own shadow. Intercepting the sunlight to brand myself onto a surface or landscape became a ritual of my travels, thwarted only by a fickle sun.
In more recent years I also began to share this rite with my significant other. The ongoing results are my photographic souvenirs.They remind me of fleeting moments together; when the magic of light etched us into far-flung places.
Secrets of Belize
Secrets of Belize is an ongoing personal project which documents life in Belize’s small coastal villages and islands. For over fifteen years Triller has photographed a country she finds seductive and captivating. She discovers its mystique in the profile of an aging fisherman or on the face of an exuberant child afloat in the sea.
From 2002 through 2010 Marie Triller took on the task of witness by documenting each September 11 at ground zero. This ritual of thousands of mourners gathering around fences and barricades became a living memorial. Triller's collection of images present a searing account of a seminal aspect of post-9/11 history.
Ten Years: Remembering 9/11 by Marie Triller (John Isaacs Books, New York) with a foreword by NY Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and an afterword by Eleanor Heartney of Art on America.
Any Given Day
Any Given Day is an ongoing series which includes images from New York to London, Uruguay to Ireland. These photographs present ordinary moments made extraordinary due to human behavior and interactions. I like to refer to these shots as those of “people caught in the act of being human”.
Coke Squares is an ongoing personal project, much of which has been created in Belize, Central America, where I frequently photograph. The ubiquitous large red circle - slashed with Coca-Cola cursive - punctuates many streets here. I consider the logo a design element within my frame, adding bold color and shape to the image as well as a rhythmic beat to a series of street storefront images cropped into squares.