Linda Troeller
Greenhouse and Beyond: A Portfolio of Photographs by Linda Troeller, 1975

13" H x 6.75" W
Image Notes
Donation - Gift of the Artist to Community Darkrooms 1975 Signed by the artist and dated May 1975 Artist Proof - incomplete set of prints 3 out of 12
Catalogue Number
Current Location
Artist Books

Object Specific Text

by Cheri Hiser

A poem for Linda Troeller
and her greenhouse
and beyond to all
futures and seeded

Her vision (your
vision) clear,
straight and
yet leaving me
to shape experiences
into the image. An acknowledgement
for that
from your
reaching leaves and
women and the part
of you
that is the same in
all of us. 

So we touched
with your eyes and
your vision and
IMAGE. Again.

From my journal

The greenhouse is like Don Juan's chaparral. 
It has become a special place where inner
voices escape from the unconscious and begin
to emerge into consciousness. Perhaps it is the
greenhouse' openness to the sky, its warmth
and humidity and its lush, fecund growth that
calls upon me and the women sitters to face

July 1974

It is most curious how the creation of images in 
the greenhouse becomes a psycho-drama.
Sometimes the sitter responds to the object or
costume as I had imagined. Sometimes I get lost
in the drama the women subjects act out on
their own – death, escapes, communion with
nature, sexual rebellion – and sometimes I forget
their acts and am led into my own imagination.
When I see allegories that are not new and
nothing occurs I get discouraged. But, when I look
at my collection of contact sheets and prints I
find again and again an image that fills me with
energetic tension. The image appears as a tunnel t
oward my Self.

March 1974 

In the Greenhouse
Self Portrait Bearing Flowers
Bridal Rite
All Lives, All Dances
Winged Victory
Lament I
Lament II
Lament III
In the Garden

January 1975

Woman in a Greenhouse

I She introduces Herself

I'm a nun in bopper's costume.
I've put away my spectacles
so nobody will recognize me. 
They'd be afraid as I am
of the vows that gape wide open
behind my eyes
Don't be astonished. 
I'm about as noble as a medieval princess, 
renouncing what the scales and the armor
tilted her out of, knocking her back
up against a convent wall. 
After everyone has fallen from me,
I can show the secret
I hold between my knees
to no one. 

II Photograph

A camera squares me off.
I kneel among potted palms
on a greenhouse shelf. 
Sun blearing through the smudged glass walls
pushes my face away from them. 
Their long leaves tremble too much
when wind bashes against the glass.

My hair is powdered prematurely gray
for the play I must act out
of my system. Dressed up now
like a Birde of Christ
in black wool weeds, I grip 
a samuri sword 
until the lace on my cuffs
turns yellow with effort.
The photographer says I must see
banners toppling over on a sacred battlefield.
When I turn the blade to my throat,
the glimmer of steel in my eye
sharpens the play to a keen edge...

I haven't got the nerve for such a calling;
my heart is too much an animal
pacing its cage. 
But it's an herbivore;
it can't touch raw meat
or feed outside where bare trees
bend double in the wind.
My veins would turn green if it struggled,
and the building palm shoots
would drop aphids onto my wrist.
Yet, the sun presses all its weight
against the glass. 
If I could only look it in the face...

But I tell my heart, " Secret animal, 
there's no way out. 
There's only you to bleed through every vein
 in my system before you give us peace. 
Then you'tt lie among palms in the parlor sun
with me, a woman turned nun 
by her own unfurling."

Carolyn Wright
March 1974

edition of 15. This portfolio, GREENHOUSE AND BEYOND includes twelve five by five inch images; six black and white photographs processed to archival standards and six color photographs. The introduction is printed with green ink on white Bristol text paper. They type is set in Times Roman. The prints are mounted on white Bristol cover paper. The images are contained in a green velour slip case. Portfolios and original prints can be ordered by writing to Linda Troeller, 44 Park St., Toms River, N.J. 08753

About the Artist

Linda Troeller

BirthplaceNew Jersey
CitizenshipUnited States
Light Work RelationshipDonation


For a more recent CV or bio please visit the artist's website,

Linda Troeller (1949- ) is an award-winning American art photographer known for her investigations into women and sexuality, self-portraiture, AIDS/HIV, and water and healing.

Born to Marion and Raymond Troeller in New Jersey, she was popular in high school (a cheerleader, queen of three proms, and Miss Ocean County Fair), and excelled at creative writing. She discovered photography while a work-study student at Ghost Ranch visiting Georgia O'Keeffe, who encouraged her.

Troeller graduated from Reed College of Media in West Virginia with a BS in journalism in 1971, and received her MS in photojournalism and public relations from Syracuse University's Newhouse School of Communication a year later. She spent a year as an assistant at the Ansel Adams Workshops in Yosemite (1974), and received her MFA from Syracuse University in 1975. Her teaching career includes positions as professor of photography at Indiana University and Stockton University, visiting lecturer at Yale University, and adjunct professor at Parsons School of Design, among others. She has published several books of her photographs, alone and in collaboration, including Healing WatersThe Erotic Lives of Women, and Living in the Chelsea Hotel, about her twelve years of residence in New York City's iconic home of artists, writers, actors, and musicians.

She has been recognized many times for her work, including several Lucie Awards, a Women of Achievement Award from Douglass College, and an award from the New York Foundation of the Arts. Her work is in the permanent collections at the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, University of Texas at Austin, and galleries in Medellin, Colombia.