November 2013



Mom at Kitchen Table

My Mother’s Last Gift

My mother died on June 23, 2013, at the age of 86. During the last five months of her life she suffered a progressive decline in her health and in the end became bedridden and helpless. Within this period I visited my mom several times in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where she was living with my dad in the home I grew up in. I realized our time together was coming to an end. I was compelled to photograph my mother and objects in the house that reminded me of her. I wanted to create something tangible that would connect me to my mother when my memories of her would start to fade. I discovered beauty in many of the everyday objects that I normally would not have deemed “interesting enough” to photograph. My ability to see this familiar environment with a fresh perspective was my mother’s last gift to me.





Beate Sass earned a Bachelor’s degree in Music from the University of Southern California in 1983 and a Certificate in Physical Therapy from the University of California, San Francisco, in 1989. “When I discovered photography nine years ago I was in the midst of raising a family and furthering my career as a physical therapist.” At that time, she realized that she needed a creative outlet. In 2004, “with much cajoling from my husband,” she purchased a digital camera. Since then she has taken a few college classes and attended Santa Fe Workshops, but is primarily self-taught.

Beate has had two solo exhibits at the Southeast Museum of Photography’s Lyonia Gallery in Deltona, Florida, in 2012 and at the LeMoyne Gallery in Tallahassee, Florida, in 2011. In addition, Beate’s photography has been shown in juried exhibitions in Atlanta. Beate’s work has been published in LensWork, Black and White Magazineand South x Southeast Photomagazine.

Beate lives in Decatur, Georgia, with her family. She works part-time as a physical therapist while pursuing her photographic interests.