Mariah Karson

Artist’s Statement

The photos in this gallery come from two series. Central Structure explores structures of unknown use in relation to their surroundings. Photographed in a static way, the viewer is allowed to create their own dialogue as to what purpose the structure has amidst the surrounding landscape.

School’s Out Forever (Detroit, 2013) was created as schools were being closed in Chicago in early 2013, and the comparison to Detroit arose in the media. What was to become of the physical structures of the schools after they close? If cities began to shutter educational institutions, where would children learn and grow, and how could a community walk away from the citizens of the future? For a child, a school is their second home, where they feel most comfortable. Losing that sense of community and belonging must be a traumatic event for displaced students.

Mariah Karson (b. 1979) is a Chicago based artist and freelance photographer. She studied photography and printmaking at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and her work has been published internationally. Specializing in editorial, event photography, and studio portraiture Mariah strives to capture honesty and clarity in order to provide her clients memorable images that tell compelling stories.

Karson was shortlisted for the 2015 Lucie Foundation’s A Photo Made Scholarship, named one of the photographers for Best of ASMP 2015, and is currently working with High Concept Labs (Chicago) as a 2016 Sponsored Artist. She has been a member of ASMP (American Society of Media Photographers) since 2013, currently serving on the Board of Directors and as acting Treasurer and Fine Arts Chair for the Chicago/ Midwest Chapter.

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About Posit Editor

Susan Lewis ( is the editor of Posit ( and the author of ten books and chapbooks, including Zoom, winner of the 2017 Washington Prize, Heisenberg's Salon, This Visit, and State of the Union. Her poetry has appeared in such places as The Awl, Berkeley Poetry Review, Boston Review, The Brooklyn Rail, Cimarron, Gargoyle, The Journal, New American Writing, The New Orleans Review, Prelude, Raritan, Seneca Review, So to Speak, Verse, Verse Daily, and VOLT.