ARNO RAFAEL MINKKINEN (American, b. 1945)

Arno Rafael Minkkinen was born in Helsinki, Finland, in June of 1945. Minkkinen immigrated to the United States in 1951 and was educated in New York at Fort Hamilton High School and Wagner College, earning a BA in English from the latter in 1967.  He studied photography at the New School for Social Research under George Tice, at the School of Visual Arts under Ralph Hattersley and at the Rhode Island School of Design under Aaron Siskind and Harry Callahan. Minkkinen received an MFA in photography from RISD in 1974. Minkkinen has worked as a copywriter at various advertising agencies and as a lecturer and instructor of photography at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the Institute of Industrial Design in Helsinki and the Philadelphia College of Art.

Minkkinen has been making nude self-portrait photographs since 1971, never using an assistant and only making single negatives. “What you see happening in the frame of my image happened inside the viewfinder of my camera,” he says.

Minkkinen has received numerous awards, including two Polaroid Studio Grants in 1984 and 1987, a New England Foundation for the Arts Fellowship/National Endowment for the Arts Regional Grant in 1991. He was honored with Rittari, First Class Lion of Knighthood by the Finnish Republic on the Sesquecentennial of Finnish Photography in 1992. Minkkinen currently resides in Andover, Massachusetts, and is a Professor of Art at the University of Massachusetts, Lowell.

Selected Collections:

Addison Gallery of American Art, Andover MA

Arthotheque de Nice, France

Arthotheque de Grenoble, France

Arthotheque de Nantes, France

Bibliotheque Nationale, France

Center for Creative Photography, University of Arizona, AZ

French National Collection, Champagne-Ardenne

French National Collection, Paris

Foundation Vincent Van Gogh, Arles France

Maison de l'Art Moderne, Paris, France

Museum of Contemporary Art, Ateneum, Helsinki

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Polaroid International Collection, Cambridge, MA

Princeton University, Minor White Archives, Princeton, NJ

Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, RI

Waino Aaltosen Museo, Turko, Finland