What do you look for in a subject?
I always look for something unique in my subjects. Either something they naturally express or something I feel like I can get out of them during a session. This could be a natural bodily feature which can become more outstanding due to a specific set-up, pose or interaction with other subjects.
Besides that - I tend to work with women who express alternative ways of femininity, queerness and gender benders making the viewer question what femininity is to them.
When did you start expressing themes of femininity in your work?
I’ve always worked with themes of femininity and the observation of the female body. It’s connecting my entire body of work and most likely always will.
How Important do you believe the concept of beauty is in photography?
I think it’s important to be aware of the exploitation of women and the false concept of what beauty is in photography especially because it’s a fast media which tend to reach a large audience. We all know that photography can be easily manipulated, but it wasn’t always that way and from the very beginning of photography, the media was seen as a truth-teller which could provide real evidence. Photography still has that effect on people today. Therefore as artists and photographers - we have a responsibility to show realness. Especially on matters which can effectively hurt people and the way they see themselves and others.
Why did you choose to photograph your subjects in this location?
I’ve always loved still-life and how women were portrayed in the old oil paintings. Women were more natural, curvy and still embodying unique features. This I think photography is missing, so I chose this location to draw the connotations to a time where the beauty standards looked somehow different than they do in modern photography.
How do you want people to respond to this?
I hope women can see parts of themselves in my portraits. No matter their size or shape, I believe all women can recognise the daily struggle women have, racing the beauty standards of our time. I also hope it will make men think about what beauty is to them and try to embrace more uniqueness, to give women the same bodily freedom that they have.
I also aimed to photograph my subjects in a way, that the viewer can recognise the beauty that I see in them, but the most important angle of all, was for the subjects themselves to recognise beauty in the features they most hated before.
Why is it important for you to document this?
This project has been very important to me, to show that there isn’t one standardized beauty and that beauty can be found in everyone.
I hope it will spark debate on why we tend to create one beauty standard for women only, which mostly is a generic type stripped for all unique bodily features when female beauty is so much more.
Interview by Nate Warburton & Caitlyn Hurley
Unity - Dates and Times
16th May 2018 - 26th May 2018
Opening Event - May 18th 6pm-8pm (RSVP HERE)
Wednesday - Friday 11:00am - 5:00pm
Saturday - 11:00am - 3:00pm