Susan Rosenberg Jones: Second Time Around
Falling in love later in life is like navigating a known terrain that hasn’t been traveled for some time. It’s familiar, but it has its hazards. The paths are well worn, and the road isn’t as smooth as it once was, but landscape feels filled with potential. Susan Rosenberg Jones uses her camera to document and examine love in the afternoon in her series, Second Time Around–this time letting the photographs become a love letter to possibility and commitment.
Susan was born and raised in Boston and moved to New York City in 1976. She earned a BS in Education from Lesley College and then enrolled in the School of Visual Arts. After working in a NYC lab as a custom black and white printer, Susan began working in the stock photography industry, where she had a long career.
She returned to her photography and took critique courses at ICP. She worked on various portrait projects: women of a certain age, couples who’d been together for many years, and in 2011 began work on Building 1, a series about her neighbors in the apartment complex in Tribeca where she’d lived since 1984.
Her project Building 1 was featured in August 2014 in the Behold blog of Slate.com, and again on TribecaCitizen.com. Susan was interviewed by Valerie Jardin for the podcast Street Focus. Her work was included in the 2015 group shows What is a Portrait? at Ripe Art Gallery in Huntington, Long Island curated Ruben Natal San Miguel and The Rites of Summer, curated by Ruben Natal San Miguel and Sean Corcoran (Museum of the City of NY).
Second Time Around
After having been married for 32 years, my husband passed away in 2008, after a long illness. Once widowed, I experienced the confusing and mixed feelings of grief: guilt, loneliness, regrets, indelible memories of loving glances, hugs, and laughs. In 2009, I decided to try online dating because I wanted to meet a man for an occasional movie or dinner date.
The second man I met online was Joel, and we felt a bond right away. Soon after, I closed my account on JDate. We married in January of 2012 in a lovely ceremony at home. I hadn’t expected to fall in love, but I did. To my surprise and delight, I found that I could deeply love this wonderful man who entered my life while holding dear the memories of my first husband.
Having been in a long-term marriage, I came to this new relationship with the tools in place to be a good wife. We quickly fell into the routine and ease of being a stable married couple, except that we were newlyweds in our 60’s. There is humor in that. For one thing, our bodies are not supple and streamlined the way they were when we were young. We both come with a lot of baggage, and at our ages, it’s no big deal, nothing to get excited about. We’ve both seen a lot, done a lot, and have higher thresholds for idiosyncratic behavior than in our 20’s and 30’s.
In this series, Second Time Around, I delight in observing my new husband as he goes about living day to day. We both know that life is short, and perhaps because of our new found love and comfort, can journey through this life with a certain enthusiasm. We feel secure, yet we know we’re lucky.
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