I love this series on so many levels. Let me tell you why, really indirectly and really aggressively.
Recently been thinking about how often I look at pictures of skinny white girls, being someone with an interest in fashion and the blogosphere. But I am not skinny, nor am I white. My bra size is an E cup, and I see nothing but bee-stings on these photographs. I look at the photographs, and I look in the mirror, and it doesn't add up in my mind, and I am unhappy with who I am. So I've been forced to ask myself, what is this preoccupation with perfection anyway, and why have we allowed ourselves to be convinced that we are not perfect already- unless we have the perfect face, the perfect teeth, the perfect bod, the perfect skin....... every last little part of the female anatomy you can imagine: PERFECT, we are told. We are shown. We are shoved it down our throats. Why are these images of perfection mostly of skinny white girls? How does that make a not-skinny not-white girl feel? Is it on purpose? And if it's not the advertising that's getting to you, it's the other women around you (my mum asked me why I haven't painted my toenails today, for example).
What is all of this doing to me subconsciously, and, how do I feel when I look in the mirror? Do all of us secretly feel that way? Do many of us ask ourselves these questions? I have had to stop looking at the pictures. I still look in the mirror, it's still a struggle. But I have had to start questioning those images whenever they pop up, which is often, but it's a start, at least. But to make matters worse, I went to the mall today, here in Brisbane of all places; just to throw myself right in the thick of it, just to torture myself a little bit more. Of course I wanted to buy everything, all the cheap bullshit that I don't even need, and I wanted to look like the other girls with their perfect clothes and makeup and hair and skin, and then cry into a greasy donut at the end conveniently, just like they want us to, just like we always do.
“The title of the series alludes to sleep disorders and occurrences of anomalous and unusual actions. The photographs are playful and skillful manipulations of the physical body to symbolize moments of ambiguity and disorientation. Within the images resides a latent force of sculptural stasis: the power of the body and the world it is held in.”
Viviane Sassen, photographer