Arno Rafael Minkkinen was born Helsinki, Finland, and he moved with his family to the US in 1951. He began taking self-portraits in 1971 while working as an advertising copywriter New York. Over the past four decades, Minkkinen has been engaged as a professor, curator and writer while continuing to devote his photographic research and energies to the self-portrait: un-manipulated images of the human figure in the natural and urban landscape.
His photographs hold a sense of voyeurism, manifesting an idea that collaborates between the internal mind and the external reality. Minkkinen’s work can be found in collections of The Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Centre Pompidou and The Maison Européenne de la Photographie in Paris, Kiasma in Finland, The Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography and Moderna Museet in Stockholm, among many others.
Seven solo monographs of his work have been published. He has just published a major monograph that contains 50 years of work.
Minkkinen was conferred the First Class Order of the Lion of Finland Medal of Knighthood in 1992, and awarded the Finnish State Art Prize in Photography in 2006. Mr. Minkkinen received the Lucie Award for Achievement in Fine Art in October 2013. In 2015 he was awarded the Guggenheim Fellowship award.