“I don’t want to hide, that’s the last thing I will ever do. I want to almost shove in people’s faces who I am and what I am, and I am not ashamed.” -Joa
A continuous experimental investigation of gender and self-expression. This exploration started through conversations what it means to identify as a woman or non-binary in today’s society. It has merged to be a project portraying powerful beings in their rawest form and given the freedom to express themselves through movement and color. Exploring what it means to have a body, breaking social norms and embracing originality. As well as talking about the constant fetishizing with anything that is different according to social standards.
6 min video and photo series, 2018
Not a body
Not a body
Experimenting with the negative space of the human body. As human beings we focus on the visible and physical experiences of our surroundings and our own bodies, causing what is unseen and unexplored to be forgotten. This piece explores what we are made of, or what fills the spaces when we are alive and what is left of us when we leave. The fragility and earthiness of the clay reflects how delicate this life is and refocuses us to the spaces in between.
My interest in painting women’s bodies gold, photographing them and then modifying the image began as a desire to represent female empowerment.
During this process I received feedback from the models about their experience being painted; the emotions and physical sensations triggered as the paint dried on their bodies, the discomfort of peeling paint off their skin. As I sought to portray female empowerment through painting women gold, I found that this aspect of women peeling, shedding and finally washing traces of gold paint down the drain fascinated me as much as painting the women in the first place.
I began to collect the delicate strips of gold acrylic paint that the models peeled off of their skin after their photo shoots. They contained fingerprints, lines and hairs. These remains signify that which is normally cast aside, unseen and forgotten. They remain as a testament to the negative side of the glorification or idealization of the female form that demands perfection and flawlessness.
The paint is captured in the box much as the women were captured in the paint. It echoes the feeling of being closed in, stiffness, being unreachable.
Perhaps the message is what it means to feel free and comfortable in ones own skin?
Painted photography on wooden board
120 x 88 cm
This body of work spawns from the dark depths of the unconscious. It is trying to link together the human form, the spiritual mind and the dark matter of the universe. Working with different layers of paint, they symbolize the social norms that are being projected onto our expression of sexuality. Layers of imprinted social rules that filter what we say, how we express ourselves and how we feel. Filtering how we see things and interpret images. They are our dark matter that we carry around, invisible to the eye but they take up so much energy. We are taught to live in the safe, light side of our sexuality and not tap into the full spectrum of our sexual identities.
Experiment with portraits. Expressing emotions through paint and gestures in a series of photos.