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UPSTATE GIRLS book launch / Brenda Kenneally

Tuesday, October 2, 2018 7 PM

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© Brenda Kenneally

Book launch and screening.
Discussion with Brenda moderated by Holly Dando, LCSW-R
Tuesday, October 2, 2018. 7 PM.


NOTE: Signed copies of Upstate Girls will be available for sale, with proceeds going to Brenda's non-profit, A Little Creative Class.

Or, pre-order your copy from publisher Regan Arts.


​Please join us to celebrate the long-awaited publication of an epic book, Upstate Girls: Unraveling Collar City, by Brenda Kenneally (Regan Arts).


The nominal subjects of Kenneally's book are herself and an interconnected set of families living on the margins in Troy, NY, Kenneally's home town. Kenneally leaves no stone unturned as she dives into Troy's history to map out the cycles of trauma that beset people who live in the grips of poverty.


Kenneally's photographs are renowned for their wholly singular, raw take on children and women. But she gives just as much page space to archival photos and imagery, prison letters, diary entries, birth certificates, nutrition guidelines, school correspondence and schoolwork, maps, personal essays, scrapbook items, medical records, court documents, and more. The result is a sweeping, visual map of intergenerational poverty and how it is partly dictated by people having to adapt to conditions that require short-term over long-term planning.

BRENDA KENNEALLY is a mother, teacher, multiplatform documentarian, Guggenheim Fellow, Pulitzer Prize nominee, and formerly incarcerated youth. Over the past thirty years, Kenneally’s long-form, immersive projects have produced visceral portraits of the personal experiences of disadvantaged children in America, as well as a ground-up historic record of contemporary social and political values in the United States. “I take pictures to remember what I’ve learned while I was busy taking pictures,” says Kenneally. It was Kenneally’s need to share what she had learned from both her own childhood in Upstate New York and the thirteen years she spent recording the current generation of Upstate Girls that lead her to form A Little Creative Class. The non-profit arts organization’s mission is to address the obstacles that deter poor and low-income youth from participation in the emerging idea-based economy. One hundred percent of the author’s proceeds from the sale of Upstate Girls will be donated to A Little Creative Class.


For more information visit

HOLLY DANDO, LCSW-R, is a counselor at Weill Cornell Medicine and a clinician at Headstrong Project, which serves traumatized vets. She is on the faculty at the Institute for Contemporary Psychotherapy, and teaches in its Integrated Trauma Studies program. Holly is also EMDR and IFS-trained, and has a private practice. Prior to this, she worked in the field of HIV/AIDS for 25 years.

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