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Katherine Oktober Matthews
Photo credit: Marie-Charlotte Pezé (2015)

Katherine Oktober Matthews (b. 1980, USA) is an artist and analyst based in Amsterdam. With a university degree in psychology and a work background in IT and the arts, she now works at the confluence of technology, psychology and expression. Her projects cross and combine media, primarily writing, photography and moving pictures. She is motivated by existential seeking: the path of understanding and taking responsibility for what it means to be alive and conscious as an individual with interdependent connections. She aims to leave the world more beautiful, intelligent, and compassionate than how she found it.

She was described by journalist Manami Okazaki as being among “the most iconic ‘toy camera’/ cult photographers” and by Life Framer as “a passionate thinker, and an advocate and champion for the photographic arts.”

Primary Publications

  • Riding the Dragon (2017 – present)
    Founder of online platform dedicated to consolation for artists and intellectuals, featuring interviews, essays and reviews on the act and challenges of creation. Visit Riding the Dragon
  • GUP Magazine (2011 – 2018)
    Contributing writer since June 2011, Online Editor from July 2012 – Oct 2014, Chief Editor from Nov 2014 – Jan 2018. Publications include articles, interviews, photo editing and criticism in the field of conceptual art photography, both print and online. Additionally as Chief Editor, responsible for defining the content of the quarterly print publication, from GUP#44 until GUP#56. Read more
  • Unique: Making Photographs in the Age of Ubiquity (House of Oktober, 2018)
    A clever but accessible guide through today’s complex landscape of photography, with the ultimate aim of discovering how to make images that matter. Read more
  • I Love Animals (Self-published, 2017)
    A self-published photobook produced in an edition of 500 copies. Shortlisted for the Arles Photo Book Award 2017. Read more
  • Elsewhere (Leaping Man, forthcoming)
    A photo|personal essay book, combining text and images. Read more

Additionally, her text and images have been published in numerous books (including Toy Tokyo, White Rabbit Fever, Amsterdam… The Essence, NEW Dutch Photography 2012), journals (Mensa World Journal, Contact Sheet, VLAK, Analog Journal, KNiK), print magazines/newspapers (AmsterDO, TimeOut Amsterdam) and online (Libération, Slate, John Adams Institute, New Dawn, TEDxAmsterdam, Versal Blog).

Biographical articles

A selection of interviews with, and articles about, Katherine Oktober Matthews.

Interview with Katherine Oktober Matthews on Life Framer (Open Call)

“In the end, I think we’re all looking for ways to mainline existence, to achieve a more direct way of tapping into ourselves, other people and our environments. That desire is replete with risks, but let’s not kid ourselves, life is a bloodsport.”
—Katherine Oktober Matthews (Life Framer, 2016)

Respect the Medium

Firestarters has posted a short interview with me, about the upcoming portfolio review GUP has…

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