The Persecution of Complete Strangers

A Wet Plate Collodion Collaboration in Bismarck, North Dakota

August 27th, 2016



I have always been a fan of William Mortensen, the man Ansel Adams called "The Anti-Christ".  I came up with the idea for our  Tabeaux Vivant "The Persecution of Complete Strangers".  The thought was that we all too often judge each other, many times without taking the time to know the person being judged.  The week of the shoot a transgendered activist was murdered, raped and her body burnt in Turkey, so I have dedicated this wet plate to the life of Hande Kader

“Judge me if you want, but at the end of my life I choose to have memories not regrets.” – Steve Maraboli


Carl Zeiss Tessar 360mm lens, 2 seconds of exposure, f11, plates 8x10".


Thank you to the beautiful and talented group of people who believed in my vision and for doing what was necessary to make it a reality. I am forever indebted to you all.  I also want to mention the undying support and creative spirit that is Linae Bieber, without her vision and talent, this wet plate collaboration could not have been possible.  I also need to thank Richard Loewen for his commitment and dedication to allowing us to persecute him on the pole, there is nothing he would not do or give to this great group of artists. 

Untitled (1927) by William Mortensen






Other Wet Plates from our time Together




Event: August 27th, 2016


Nostalgic Glass Wet Plate Studio, Shane Balkowitsch, Ambrotypist


Cast:                   Support Staff:

Richard Loewen (The Persecuted)   

Persecutors  –             Jason Lueder, Carpentry

Linae Bieber                      Mike LaLonde, Photography

Jessie Leben                      Chad Balkowitsch, Set Design

Garver Malsam                     Dustin White, Writer

Abby Balkowitsch                  Chad Nodland, Photography

                                  John LaLonde, Photography 

                                  Linae Bieber, Wardrobe, Hair and Make-up

                                  and Lead Collaborator and Composition                

Mourners –                

Danni Lueder                  

Judith Roberts                   

Melanie Malsam                               


Contact Information:
Shane Balkowitsch, Ambrotypist
Nostalgic Glass
4419 Centurion Dr.
Bismarck, ND 58504
(701)223-9936 Phone

Copyright Note: All referenced photographs, images and logos provided above are for informational purposes only and they are the property of their respective owners.  Mike LaLonde, Chad Nodland, John LaLonde and  White, were photographers kind enough to bring their cameras to the Persecution and provide images as part of the collaboration.