Ruth Kaplan

Ruth Kaplan took this photo during a 2005 weekend workshop at the Toronto Airport Christian Fellowship. The workshop’s theme was “Healing Life’s Hurts,” and spontaneous manifestations of worship were encouraged. The woman here seems to be immersed in a transformation within her own fantasy. Her expression of spiritual passion is so physical and intimate, yet she allowed Ruth to be close, to witness and to document her performance, both conscious and oblivious. “Though this photograph isn’t intended to provoke change,” says Ruth, “it describes a transitional, elusive state. Confronted with this heightened, out-of-control reality, we wonder, as viewers, what would it be like if we allowed ourselves that liberation?”

Ruth Kaplan is a documentary-based photographer whose work explores a variety of themes, including bathers in hot springs, participants in rituals of spirituality and refugees pending immigration to Canada. Drawn toward the theatre of social behaviour expressed through physicality; her work describes intimacy within a public sphere.
She has received numerous Canada Council, Ontario Arts Council and Toronto Arts Council grants, National Magazine Awards and has exhibited widely. She is currently a photography instructor in Toronto, and is represented by the Stephen Bulger Gallery.