Craig Davies for Art-Sheep
Images © Sophie Klafter
Sophie Klafter is a New York-based artist whose photographic work of people with physical differences is inspired from her own experience living with the CMT disease.
The artist was born with the rare neuromuscular disorder Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease (CMT), a disorder that damages nerves in the arms and legs. After taking her own portraits, she later started photographing other people with disabilities, as a way to meet them, communicate with them and get to know about their lives and their corporeality. “I not only wanted to create portraits of disabled people functioning out in the world; I also wanted their life stories,” she explains on her website. “I wanted to go into their homes, meet their families, hold their possessions, and hear their stories of perseverance. I wanted to truly capture their spirit and what it was like for them to go through life in an atypical body. I wanted others to experience their corpoReality.”
Below you can see Klafter’s images, as displayed on her website, and read about the lives of her special models.
Dad and me
Born with Charcot-Marie Tooth disease, Sophie currently lives in New York City as a photographer.
Kathy has a long family history of androgenetic alopecia (female pattern hair loss)
Sarah is a painter, sculptor and harpist. Born without legs and only one arm, she
loves her body and believes she was put on this earth for a reason. She says she
will miss her body in her next life.“The most difficult thing about being disabled is that people around you become
blind and deaf.”
Born profoundly deaf, this passionate student loves soccer, basketball, computer games, cooking and reading. When he grows up he wants to be a chef. Josh can now hear since
his cochlear implant surgery.
Steve is a comedian who was born with muscular dystrophy. He is working
on a comic web series spreading disabilities awareness with his new
show called “Uplifting Dystrophy.”
After losing her leg to cancer, Kahreemah started rock climbing as a hobby. She
now teaches adaptive climbing lessons in Brooklyn, NY.
Born in Venezuela, Samantha is a college student with lymphedema. She sings
opera and plays the violin with exuberance and confidence.
Along with his two brothers and both of his parents, Justin was born with albinism. He works at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and is building his career as a model.
After news of inheriting the BRCA II gene, Sarah opted for a prophylactic double
mastectomy. Her new breasts were reconstructed by transferring skin and fat from
other parts of her body. She is a fearless skydiver and mother of three.
Born with Charcot-Marie Tooth Disease, Jeff is an accomplished lawyer. He also
has degrees in mathematics and engineering, and is the proud father of three.
Born with Down syndrome, Adam enjoys working at Chili’s. He loves bodybuilding
and is an avid athlete.
Geri is a disability awareness advocate and speaker born with diastrophic dysplasia.
Ig-e (and his girlfriend Geanne)
I-ge suffered an L3 spinal cord injury. He believes “everything happens, that has and will.”