In 1988, Susan Lipper began to document the community of Grapevine Hollow in West Virginia, USA. This small settlement, significantly distanced by geography and culture from Manhattan, where Lipper has lived for all of her adult life, has now become an iconic series within contemporary photographic practice.
Susan Lipper has been making photographs in Grapevine for over two decades, becoming a familiar member of a community which rarely mixes with the outside world. The Grapevine series says much about photography and its multiplicities. Susan Lipper has used the medium both to narrate the everyday life of an 'ordinary' and out-of-the-way place, and has rendered it extraordinary, constructing a diaristic narrative which is complicated, subtle and revealing. More than almost any photographer of her generation, Susan Lipper has used photography as a teller of stories, through intricate exercises in collaborative documentary.