Amy O’Neill
Redheaded Stranger
Karma, New York, 2014
28 pages
10 12 × 7 inches
Edition of 500


Everything we think is governed by impulses firing across synapses, the spaces between cells that guide communication in the brain. When any pattern is repeated enough, the synaptic pathways associated with that pattern get used to being accessed. As a result, it becomes easier for impulses to travel and the behavior seems “natural.” In Red Headed Stranger, Amy O’Neill presents us with the image of auburn haired beauty queens placed atop elaborate floats—the portraits quickly begin to dispel our ideal of classic beauty. Psychologists believe it takes approximately twenty repetitions before something feels natural; Red Headed Stranger contains fourteen images.