Placitas Artists - Bill Skees
About the Artist - Bill Skees
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Bill Skees is a fine art photographer. He received the Bachelor of Arts degree from St. Benedict's College, Atchison, Kansas, and studied photography at the Maine Photographic Workshops and at the Palm Beach Photographic Workshop. He has worked in the Smithsonian's Sackler Museum photographic department. He has studied with leading photographers Joyce Tenneson, Rodney Smith and Jean-Francois Bauret.

The Takoma Women's Health Center has hosted three solo exhibitions of Bill Skees's fine art prints. His latest one artist show, exploring woman to woman connections, was entitled "Two Women - One Presence." Bill's work with women has led from his fitness series of body builders, to his pregnancy series and his mother and child series, to his most recent show dealing with women's friendships.

In this most recent work Skees explores the close relationships that women establish with one another. His images include mothers and daughters, sisters, best friends and companions. They range from the surreal faces of two sisters recorded on black and white infrared film, to two friends, one Caucasian and one African, who appear clothed in one photograph, and unclothed in a mirror image of the same scene in an adjacent photograph.

Skees often explores several different facets of his models' relationships, using different settings, both inside the studio and out of doors, and over several months in time. These images cause the viewer to reconsider his or her own preconceptions about the many ways in which women connect with one another and about how people react to this sense of closeness between women of their own acquaintance.

Skees's images were displayed in three different galleries in the Greater Washington DC area. In addition to Takoma Park they were shown at the D. C. Arts Center in Adams Morgan, under the sponsorship of Washington's Corcoran Gallery, and at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) in Georgetown.

His photographs have been published in The Montgomery Journal, Datamation Magazine and The Washingtonian Magazine. A 1996 calendar of his photographs of mothers, fathers and children was published for La Leche League International by The Sacred Bark Trading Company. The Georgetown University Institute for Reproductive Health chose his images for the front cover of their annual publication "Breastfeeding - Protecting A Natural Resource."

Fairfax County Channel 10 Television produced a one-hour interview documentary on his photographic images and techniques. His works have also appeared at The Artists' Attic in Occoquan, Virginia; The Atheneum in Alexandria, Virginia; The Art League of Northern Virginia; The Midwives' Alliance of North America art show in Chicago, Illinois; and The Washington Project for the Arts, Washington, D.C.

He has also been exhibited in single-artist shows at The Tysons Corner Sports Club, Tysons Corner, Virginia; and at The Sacred Bark Trading Company, Purcellville, Virginia.

As a photographer and an artist Bill is fascinated with the communication between artist and subject as an integral part of the process of making art. In his work he tries to convey to his viewers some sense of the rapport generated in sessions with his subjects and some feeling for the central focus of his subjects' most precious moments. An earlier show in Takoma Park was a celebration of the shared life of mothers and their children. The latest show there built upon a collection of intimate images reflecting the closeness and candor of woman to woman connections.

    Published art work:

  • “The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding”, 6th Rev. Ed., La Leche League
  • “Breastfeeding Saves Lives”, Institute for Reproductive Health
  • “Heartfelt Love”, Calendar, La Leche League
  • “Leaven” Magazine, La Leche League
  • “Breastfeeding — Protecting a Natural Resource,” Inst. For Reproductive Health
  • Aesthetic Care Center ad, Washingtonian Magazine, Sept. 1989