Inta Ruka

Latvian, 1958–present

Ruka sees people and even more every single individual’s unique story and meaning of life as a tale to tell. Since the end of the 1970s, she has not stopped photographing people she meets in her country, from her hometown Balvi to Riga.

The monograph of black-and-white images People I know (2012) is a rare collection of portraits with inexorable consistency and subtle tonality, including the series My Country People, People I happened to Meet and Amalias Street 5a from 1980s to 2008. 

August Sander, Walker Evans and Imogen Cunningham are often mentioned as her inspiration but there is a more of curiosity and affectionate gaze towards the subjects in Ruka’s works.

Representing Latvia in Venice art biennale in 1999, Ruka has gained international acclaim and her works have been exhibited in several countries, including the Netherlands, France, Poland, Germany, Estonia and Sweden, among others, focusing solely on her own projects and ever-growing interest in people around her.