Cat Gwynn: Hungry – The Insatiable State of America
Money never made a man happy yet, nor will it. The more a man has, the more he wants. Instead of filling a vacuum, it makes one.
– Benjamin Franklin
Today I’m not only celebrating Cat Gwynn’s award-winning photography, but also celebrating the fact that today is her birthday! Cat straddles the fine art and editorial photo arenas and brings the ability to synthesize and interpret the world with a split second intelligence to her work. I am featuring her project, Hungry–The Insatiable State of America, conceived as a book project (looking for a publisher) and calling attention to the sad state of affairs of American Culture.
Educated in photography, film, and fine-arts at Otis/ Parsons Art Institute, she has also completed master workshops with such esteemed artists as Mary Ellen Mark, Joel Peter Witkin, and Barbara Kruger. Cat’s photographs have appeared in numerous publications, including Artforum, Newsweek, Texas Monthly, PDN and Artweek (cover). Her commercial clients include Apple Computers, Sylvania, Starwood Resorts and T-Mobile. Her work has been collected and exhibited in galleries and museums internationally, such as the Lishui Museum of Photography in China, The Drawing Center, NYC, Photographic Northwest Center, Seattle, and the Orange Country Center for Contemporary Art.
Cat won the first place award in the PCNW’s 8th Annual Photographic Competition and Exhibition, Sustaining Vision. Honoring a photographer for an aesthetically cohesive body of work, the award went to Cat for her images from Hungry – The Insatiable State of America. Additionally, Cat’s images from, Hungry – The Insatiable State of America, were recognized in the “Otto Bettman 100 Photo Contest: Spirit of the Times”, and were inducted into the historical Bettman archive. She is a founding member of Six Shooters.
From our corporate sponsors:
What’s in your wallet? Take control. Have it your way. Taste it all. Think about less and enjoy more. Live Richly. The future takes Visa.
But what kind of future will we have if we don’t take responsibility?
Bombarded with messages by society and the media priming us to look outside of ourselves to find happiness, telling us To Consume, that More is Better, we mindlessly buy into the calculated promotion of selling our cravings beyond our needs. As a result, we’ve evolved into a ravenous nation obsessed with idealized perfection, aching to consume to fill our emptiness, stuffing ourselves to bind our insecurities, and ultimately living beyond our means in search for meaning.
But what is truly meaningful?
Every single one of us has wants and desires, and we all face feelings that we are not good enough, that we must change and improve. So we strive to lose weight, gain approval, exert control, request redemption… Then, tyrannized by an overload of choices and exhausted by misconceived “shoulds”, we conveniently settle for a numbing state of conformity. Bewildered and dissatisfied, we run from our responsibilities, medicate our fears, depend on someone else for the answers, and hope and pray that something bigger than ourselves will ultimately save us.
But who will save us?
Serving up ironic observations coupled with incisive societal insights, HUNGRY -‐ The Insatiable State of America speaks provocatively about the Human quest for attainment, love, acceptance and salvation, through consumption. Surprisingly, in the end, you might find what you hunger for not being what feeds you and that certainly is food for thought…
The trouble with the world is not that people know too little, but that they know so many things that ain’t so. – Mark Twain
The lust for comfort, that stealthy thing that enters the house a guest and then becomes a host, and then a master. – Kahlil Gibran
How few there are who have courage enough to own their faults or resolution enough to mend them. – Benjamin Franklin
Posts on Lenscratch may not be reproduced without the permission of the Lenscratch staff and the photographer.
The CENTER Awards: Project Development Grant: Guanyu XuJune 14th, 2021
Focus on Vernacular: The Unperson ProjectJune 8th, 2021
Focus on Vernacular: Greg Sand: ChronicleJune 7th, 2021
Christiane Feser: In BetweenMay 30th, 2021