Female members of my family, both related and not, married, divorce or otherwise, who are familiar and strangers, all asked to document their lives on a disposable camera. I had a visual conversation with their images.
I, We, You: Barbara
Found Images of Barbara Ann Pry’s life combined with screen printed text “I” “we” “you” and the bag with her remaining belongings.
Maternal Baptism: after the water breaks
These photographs show the everyday mixed with the ceremony of the Christian baptism. This patriarchal religion’s role in female identity is examined through the mother figure and child. From the moment the water breaks in the womb both the mother and child are born, or rather, reborn. They are connected through life by fluids-amniotic and beyond.
Show and Tell
Sustainable living is emerging everywhere right now. This lifestyle has a complex power as it simultaneously belongs to and fights against a capitalist system. This gray area of being within boundaries while pushing against them interested me most. Admission into the sustainability sphere often requires a level of privilege; however, involvement in this area can also mean membership in a sort of grassroots community. There is a desire to focus on the individual makers, growers, and producers within a small community instead of the monopolies and big businesses. I am interested in people who try to work outside of the systems upon which they also depend. Athens County in particular is a fascinating place to observe the slippage between unique creation and mass culture as it is a rural community consisting not only of laborers but also artisans. Like its subjects, the images in this series work off of one another, creating a community within the piece itself.
Both the bodies and objects within these homes showcase a sense of pride. This series of work revolved around one main statement, “Tell me about your home.”
What defines a relationship? Who decides what is “real”?
Meet Miranda. She is much more than molded plastic I bought online. She is my doll, my invisible friend, and part of my journey. As a child my baby doll was incredibly important to me as a source of enjoyment, love, and security. My doll helped me through my parents’ divorce and the struggles of childhood. Dolls are a common friend and security blanket for children, specifically girls, but eventually we seem to outgrow and move on from our dolls. I wondered what it would be like if we didn’t discard our dolls. What would it look like if we grew up together? What is it about dolls (or mannequins) that we connect to so strongly in our society? How else can we explore our primal needs for desire and affection?
With Miranda I work through the constructed ideas of a relationships and authenticity. Using my camera to explore these thoughts I capture moments of our life together. I want my viewers to debate on Miranda’s purpose. Is she a stand in for a specific person(s)? Are the sites and surroundings specific to people or moments? By using a variety of views people are able to enter our world and sense the emotional energy. Gaze plays a key role in all of my photographs as well as the different degrees of obscuring Miranda’s obvious plastic body. The narratives created allow viewers to see the range of dependency in our relationship. I want the audience to be as absorbed with the images as I am with Miranda. Beyond that, I want the viewers to question socially constructed ideas of what a relationship means. Is it less real because Miranda isn’t living? What gives a relationship value? Although Miranda and I are still in the beginning stages of our relationship I believe we are starting to explore and reevaluate the authenticity and alternatives of being connected.
Collage Comfort Consumerism
This is a collection of matrilineal artifacts collaged together and sent off to a company to mechanically produce the blanket. When things previously made by hand are now replaced by machine and become a personal affect the dialogue of what is authentic and valuable is reinterpreted. This also addresses the replacement of hidden labor by mothers through commodities and the human desire to see documentation of our existence and immortality.
Barbara Pry and I
I bought Barbara Pry.
Or at least a substantial portion of her life in photographs for $34, collected in a ziplock bag, sitting in an antique store in Ohio. With the very little information that was included I was able to do my own research about Barbara (who I found out had died in 2011.)
Since purchasing what felt like paper remains of this woman I have begun to find ways of exploring our connections and narrating who I imagine Barbara to be. How our relationship to the region of Ohio, being a female in the Midwest, and other overlapping material has begun to unfold.
This is a visual story of Barbara Pry and I.
Through the material of 120 film I explore through the psychological aspects of self and other, the fear and loathing of femininity, and observing oneself
Generation Why is a small collection of a variety of people belonging to generation Y. This is based off the the theory that often the generation growing up in war and economic struggle tend to be culturally progressive both politically and personally. I took each image on 35 mm film and physically chewed up each image to a varying degree, demonstrating a generation coming through a variety different difficulties but enduring. This word play is about people asking questions and moving forward in a charged society.
This series was worked in two slightly different iterations. Both suggest an idea of storytelling, memory, and truth.
It is known that art is a reflection of our culture but how have we become a reflection of art? Throughout history pose, object, color, and setting have been recognizable elements of art. Spaces, people and activities that seem mundane can often be the most alluring photos to capture. I intend to combine the ordinary with vestiges of “classical” references. The juxtaposition of things within the frame should cause the viewer to inspect and interpret. After all, it is human nature to want to explain and comprehend people and situations in order for our minds to accept and allow what we see. The unconventional photo should allow for a vast degree of storytelling.
I am interested in an image being both controlled and comfortable. The posing in particular is crucial to the meaning of the photograph. From renaissance paintings to senior photos, poses have a way of demanding attention and telling a story. What many of us would consider “classic” poses seem to be quite contrived yet somewhat unconsciously recognizable. The spaces and the people are in are equally important because they aren’t known for their historical identity but rather their modern day appearance. It is with this mix of old and new that I desire for the viewer to question what in life, and in our own lives, is posed, controlled, and staged. How much do we control our own bodies and spaces? Does this affect how one’s gender, sexuality and identity is portrayed? I want us to dismantle the blurred lines between reality and fiction.
Mundane moments hold magic.
As a commuter student such things as new dorm rooms, roommates, or campus dining do not surround me. Instead, my siblings, parents, living room, and my familiar bed are where I spend the majority of my time. I am inspired by the domestic situations that I find myself immersed. By observing my surroundings, the faces that I recognize gain compelling beauty and meaning. The walls and furniture that have enclosed and directed my own personal space have become infinitely more interesting and endearing.
I want to document these mundane parts of life in a more critical and appealing way. The environment and subject should make you want to look deeper. I use a deadpan approach allowing the work to feel honest, unobstructed, and clearly composed. By choosing to present domestic life in a systematic and forthright manner I am allowing the people and surroundings to become the focus in a way they never could before. I decided to include myself in some of the imagery because I too am a part of this life. The objective is to introduce my family through gaze, setting, posture, and situation. I would like to observe and embrace this habitual domain. We can all relate to these situations, subjects, and spaces, yet we rarely think twice about any of them. I want to give the monotonous moments in our lives significance.