MFA ’19 Photography
What have I bestowed upon my children from my prior generations?
This project reflects on the intergenerational transmission of gender patterns in raising children, which can lead to inequality and encourages “gender roles,” such as the focus on power and success for boys and societal pressure of image and place for girls. From an early age, parents and educators consciously or unconsciously stereotype and model their children with gender-related expectations. These children then constitute the society that will further define gender behaviors, creating an ongoing cycle that is difficult to upend.
I use both traditional view and digital cameras to create a series of photographs that unveil these feelings of tension and unease. Adjacent to the images are testimonials from friends and family that reflect these emotions and expectations that follow us quietly throughout life. The text is printed in off-white on a white surface, resulting in a nearly illegible element of the work, just as what we see on the surface of those around us is a glimpse of the full story.
Ceramics are timeless and commonly associated with feeding and domestic space. They are solid yet fragile objects that can be passed from generation to generation. These elements inspired me to experiment with alternative photographic processes on clay. I mixed different techniques to integrate photography and clay in a fully fired ceramic, thus preserving the image.
I also intend to publish a book that would enable my work to reach a larger audience.