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‘ I feel certain that the largest part of all photographs ever taken or being taken or to be taken is and will continue to be, portraits. This is not only true, it is also necessary. We are not solitary mammals, like the elephant, the whale and the ape. What is most profoundly felt between us, even if hidden, will reappear in our own portraits of one another.’
Ben Maddow, 1977
Something Familiar is about the two worlds we occupy, our inner universe of self and the one that forms us. It’s about those moments of vulnerability when we retract into ourselves and peek out from inside. The soft tissue of our hearts and minds protected by the barriers we place around us, and the ones we find ourselves surrounded by.
I’m interested in exploring relationships both outside and within the portrait. They are as much about the construction, the form and the objectification of images as their emotional content. They represent the fragility and the unseen behind what we present to the world and how we present it.
A kind of tension is formed in presenting dualities and meeting points: open and closed, soft and hard. The creation of simulacra protects the emotional core in the portrait and establishes another layer for silent contemplation… The introverted sensation in the extroverted object. Portraits have this uncanny power in being so charged with the ability to strike an emotional core that sits so deep within us. They can also be such great deceivers in their construction that they give no certain answers and ultimately reflect us back upon ourselves.
The framing and reframing both unify and separate them, representing mind and body, that of which we recognize in ourselves hidden from others and that of which is hidden from us. But they are also subtle reminders that what we see, what was and what we perceive are not necessarily the same.
“I am the key to the lock in your house
That keeps your toys in the basement
And if you get too far inside
You'll only see my reflection”
Radiohead, Climbing Up The Walls, OK Computer, 1997