About the Being Woman and All Things Girly series…Both series are my vision of the seen, the unseen, the silent, the not so silent, and all the curious little spaces that make up but a portion of life as a woman. My images merge a bit of human psychology with some structured visual representation, those being mannequins and a live model. The bare essence of this narrative suggests the rawness I feel, or have felt as a woman, it leaves me with honest vulnerability.
My perspective is that the imagery speaks for itself as I present visuals which are riddled with many suggested life experiences. It is not merely the images I capture, but rather the way with which I elect to conceptually present them. As an example, in my first series, Being Woman I, photos were printed on transparency film, attached to heavily grained wood and encased in an acrylic medium. There is a haunting roughness and beauty to how the grain in the birch depicts curves and lends to the depth of each image, and they are all unique, like the grain. In the second series, the way in which I illuminated the displayed art afforded them to become “larger than life” and “out there.”
In All Things Girly there is masked whimsy. The use of specific chintzy materials to render a somewhat child-like appearance, which is how it felt to construct, juxtaposed with images that are daring and provocative, gives the viewer a wide berth in which to interpret the pieces.
Part of the powerfulness in this body of work is my percieved wisdom that when stripped of all of the outer trappings, and in our naivete, we are human, we are feeling, we are needy. With the portrayal of itneractions between flesh and fiberglass the narrative becomes opulent with ironic innuendo. Interestingly enough, some viewers have queried if there is a “live” model in the images or confuse the two.
Cherla Art (Cheryl Ann Shanks)
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