Book Week: Jen Davis: Eleven Years
Jen Davis has spent eleven years working on a series of self-portrait ’s dealing with issues regarding beauty, identity, and body image. Her poignant and beautifully articulated photographs have recently been published Kehrer Verlag in a monograph titled, Eleven Years. For over a decade Jen has bravely turned the camera on herself revealing a journey of self analysis and self awareness that while very personal, it incredibly universal. Her work reflected a mastery of light and color.
Jen has exhibited widely including at the Indianapolis Museum of Art; the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; the Center for Photography at Woodstock; Light Work Gallery, Syracuse; Musée de l’Elysée, Lausanne. Davis’s photographs are in many public and private collections, the Art Institute of Chicago, The Sir Elton John Photography Collection, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and The Library of Congress among others. The series has been featured in publications including Camera Austria, Aperture, Photography Quarterly, New York Times Lens Blog, Huffington Post, The Telegraph, Oprah.com and PDN.
The book includes essays by Anne Wiles Tucker and John Pilson:
Anne Wilkes Tucker founded the photography department at The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston in 1976 and is currently the Gus and Lyndall Wortham Curator. In 2001, TIME magazine honored her as “America’s Best Curator”.
John Pilson is a photographer, video artist and teacher at Yale University School of Art and Bard College.
In this body of work, I deal with my insecurities about my body image and the direct correlation between self-perception and the way one is perceived by others. Photography is the medium that I use to tell my stor y through life, an outlet for revealing my thoughts and opinions about the society in which we live. A society that dictates beauty based on ones physical appearance.
In my photographs I aim to raise questions regarding beauty, desire, body image, and identity through a focused observation of my personal story. I have built a relationship between the camera and myself where I transform the act of taking a photograph into a performance for the camera. Many of my pictures take place inmy home, revealing aspects of myself that are private and personal. My work is par tially based on personal experiences that I have re- constructed into a photograph, and the other part consists of made up fantasies of what I imagine a physical relationship to be regarding intimacy, love and desire
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