Photos by Allison Barr
Modeled by Kiana Williams

Until Dawn

I lie next to him, my hand holding his, feeling the warmth of his plump fingers. I still say “plump,” even though the childlike baby fat that once adorned his frame has long since withered away—his small legs still steady, only able to stand, not walk. A simple turn needed his enormous focus—he’d lean entirely on his walker, my arm wrapped around his waist, his feet shuffling no more than three inches at a time. “Hold on,” I’d say, “Give me a second to get ready,” but he’d never wait for me.

"He’s lighter than a feather,” David, his caregiver, remarked with surprise after moving him from his mobility scooter to his bed with a single fluid movement. I knew then that my cousin had finally yielded control.

I lie next to him, my hand holding his, feeling the warmth of his plump fingers.  Twelve years ago, I lay alongside him for the first time. I was four years old, holding his three-month-old body in my arms, falling asleep to the sound of his tiny, labored breaths, my head resting against his thick, spongy curls.

Three hours ago, having lost the ability to use his lips and tongue to form words, he began to sound out a phrase, heaving shallow breaths between each letter, “I W-A-N-T T-O D-.” Knowing what came next, I met his next letter with his full sentence: “I want to die.”

We’d already discussed this. The doctors said it would take less than a week once he stopped eating. We would all have time. His mom. My mom. Me. Forget school. Forget rehabilitation. Forget everything. I would have time to just be with him.

I lie next to him, my hand holding his, feeling the warmth of his plump fingers. I once held his hand and cheered after he’d learned how to ride his bicycle without training wheels. Two years later, I held his hand and cheered after we made our way four icy Connecticut blocks back to my aunt’s house in the middle of a heavy snow, with Robert gripping a walking stick in one hand and my arm with the other. I watched his footing after every step, probing the sidewalk for any object that might cause a skid or a stumble. Not yet adjusted to planning for his disability, we’d gone outside to play in the snow without checking the weather. 

They’d discharged him from the hospital, and he was now at home again so he could spend his last days in comfort.

I lie next to him, my hand holding his, feeling the warmth of his plump fingers. For twelve years, Robert shared his imagination, his hopes and dreams. For twelve years, I’d practically raised him. He knew every secret I had but one: his mother told me that if she was pregnant again (and she really hoped she was), she wanted Robert to name his new sibling. After his caregivers transferred Robert to bed an hour ago, I sat down next to him and told him her secret.

I glanced at my watch, drew a dose of morphine into the nozzle, and eked it underneath his tongue.

Robert fell asleep. I followed.

And then I awakened, alone. How long does a body stay warm after death? I rolled out of bed and stumbled in the dark towards the door to wake my aunt, but I was quickly dragged back to bed by nausea. I didn’t know what to do next. I sat down next to Robert, my hand finding his, met with the unfamiliar chill of thin, boney fingers. I traced his palm with my fingers and leaned back, letting my head rest against his bedpost. 

Give me time.

Just a little more time. 

At least until dawn.

By Zahrah Abdulrauf


Finding familiarity in such a distant place

These photos explore a world of ongoing equilibrium and articulate the monotonous stream of daily events in such a way that even such ordinary experiences and surroundings become alien. By exploring the concept of landscape in a nostalgic way, I focus on the idea of public space: spaces where anyone can do anything at any given moment and space that is typically viewed as uninteresting. The bright subjects are moving about a dull, unwavering landscape where they can do anything, yet the uniformity of their environment overrules their desires.
The beginning works radiate a cold and latent violence from which disconcerting beauty emerges. I investigate the dynamics of landscape, including the manipulation of its effects and the limits of it based on our assumptions of what landscape means to us. Rather than presenting a factual reality, an illusion is fabricated to conjure the realms of our imagination. In establishing a link between the landscape’s reality and that imagined, a world in which the viewer thought they knew like the back of their hand is portrayed as something much more foreign and unwelcoming. The work follows the subjects on their journey to find familiarity in such a distant place.

Modeled by Addie Gross, Ava Calbreath, Bella Havens, and Ben Zix
Assisted by Eric Thomas

A Wish

By Syahirah Harun

With You

By Soani Velez

On & On & On

Tomas Kalnoky, also known by his solo stage name, Toh Kay, is one of my favorite musicians and my biggest superstar. He is the lead guitarist and singer in the New Jersey-based ska-punk band Streetlight Manifesto; his complex and fast lyrics have held a place in my heart for many years. Tomas is my superstar because he never gives up. His dedication and stubbornness inspire my own personal attitude, while his gentle but strong acoustic songs inspire my own music.

By Sonya Alfano

Gold Star

Asides from the title, nothing about these photos is fake. Walking in galleries with friends, shivering in the cold air, and petting dogs is a wonderful combination. The energy of that night was tangible and so real that when combined with little gold stars, it has an interesting dichotomy: faux combined with genuine, a collage of realities. But, to be fair, life isn’t worth overanalyzing. It's worth living.

Photos by Sophie Sebastiani
Modeled by Sophia Palacio, Katherine Carraway, and Cadie Barnes


By Teresa Woodcock

She's a Brainiac

I am starting a new project called "she's a brainiac" in which I highlight strong, intelligent women of the past and present. 

Today's brainiac is Hedy Lamarr. Not only was she a gorgeous film actress in the '40's, but she was also a brilliant inventor. Her development of a "frequency hopper" radio device greatly influenced today's WiFi and GPS. At only 26, working with composer George Antheil, Lamarr created a radio-controlled torpedo that avoided enemy detection and jamming, an invention she hoped would help defeat the Nazis. Although the Navy rejected their plan, the Patent Office issued two patents (the Antheil-Lamarr "secret communication system"). The Navy acquired these patents yet did nothing until they expired in 1960, and the invention then became the basis for the technology used to develop WiFi and GPS.

In a time shrouded by the notion that men were more intelligent than women, Hedy Lamarr challenged traditional norms abut a woman's "place" in society. 

I created this short video using a digital illustration of Hedy Lamarr that I drew combined with digital collage and audio from her movie, Strange Woman.

By Parker Halliday