Erika Larsen knew she wanted to photograph the reindeer herders who live as nomads throughout northern Scandinavia and Russia, known as the Sámi. In order to truly immerse herself in their culture, Larsen initially worked as a housekeeper for a Sámi family. She cleaned bathrooms and learned to cook reindeer while earning the trust and confidence of a people she describes as living both “of the past” and also “of the now.”
It’s rare a photographer’s journey is as interesting as the output from his or her project. In Larsen’s case, her devotion to the Sámi people lead her back again and again, first as a stranger, second as a Fulbright scholar, and eventually as a student studying their Arctic language. Images from her book, Sámi-Walking with Reindeer, have been featured in National Geographic and NYTimes Lens blog. They are as haunting as they are intimate: women in traditional dresses smiling in the harsh winter glare, a reindeer carcass thrown neatly over a kitchen counter, a herd of docile reindeer pulled straight from folklore. Tonight, Friday, April 19th, the International Center of Photography in New York City is hosting her book signing from 6:00-7:30PM.
Erika Larsen’s Sami Book Signing
ICP Store, 1133 Avenue of the Americas
Friday, April 19, 6:00pm–7:30pm