Tina Barney: Social Studies a film by Jaci Judelson. 2005, USA, 57 min. With Tina Barney. Shot over two years, a documentary on the life and work of a great contemporary photographer.


Tina Barney is one of America’s greatest contemporary art photographers. She is known for her large-scale, color portraits of the upper class — a milieu in which she grew up. She started capturing images of her friends and family from Rhode Island in the mid 1970s and quickly gained the art world’s attention for these tableau-like candid images. Her work focuses on families, and a vanishing world and way of life.



“I knew I couldn’t light anything as she would be lighting her photographs when she takes them. So I decided it would be about hanging out with her. I didn’t want any classic interviews either. It’s a character film, she’s a great character. And a look into a milieu we don’t often get a glimpse into via photography.” JACI JUDELSON


Jaci Judelson loved Tina Barney’s work. Someone in common put them in touch when the photographer was planning her trip to Europe, where Judelson is based, for her series The Europeans. She asked Barney if she could make a film about her. Barney had already refused previous similar projects, being very private and cautious about her subjects. Barney invited her to meet her in Rhode Island and Judelson took a small camera in case. All the documentary’s scenes shot in the car are from their first meeting. Jaci Judelson then followed her over the course of two years, shooting it herself with a professional Sony DV-CAM, often with a sound person. With a background in fashion and culture, Jaci Judelson directs commercials, documentaries and content-driven branded entertainment.

Credits for
Tina Barney
written by
Jaci Judelson
produced by
Johan Pfeffer
Jaci Judelson
Christopher M. Kaiser & Julian Maas
Barbara Gies