©2015

Images are scanned negatives of 120 mm Kodak Portra 400 Professional colour photographic film

and 120 mm Fomapan 400 Action black and white photographic film

Aesthetic Distance is an exploration of desire and the sense of self and it features a series of performed photographic self-portraits. Here the desire is understood as a medium of psychological expression through which I observe social and cultural meanings as much as criticise ideas endorsed by the stereotypical representation of them. 


At that time, as I entered my forties as a single woman, I failed to attain certain outcomes that would have met the expectations I and tradition carried for me. Challenged by the resulting state of longing and alienation, I performed to the lens to confront my emotional response rather than portraying it literally. Drawing on the emotional conflict aroused by the divergence of reality that exists from that which has been desired, I used performance as a strategy to reflect on my childhood-to-adulthood experiences. 


The work is clearly associated with my intimate life, but its execution has added elements that allow for different layers of interpretation. At times the role-playing attitude disturbs gender based social positions. It shifts between assertiveness and vulnerability and touches on themes of authenticity and identity. The various connotations created within each image may leave a sense of confusion, intentionally, as they defy culturally assigned conceptions. This is even more pronounced by the confrontational gaze that seeks to bring the power and constraints of the framework of beliefs within which we live to the viewer's attention. All in a manner that provokes but does not denounce. 


This project developed from my interest in employing my own body in order to explore my subject as well as it has begun my exploration of a link between artistic execution and cathartic alleviation. Aesthetic Distance is an expression I borrowed from Thomas J. Sheffer's theory of catharsis where he uses this term to name a frame of mind that enables you to achieve a cathartic experience. It means when you find yourself in an optimal distance from your distress that still leaves you emotionally involved, but not to the extent of evoking raw emotions, then the liberating emotional discharge takes place.