The first time shiny, reflective materials and objects resonated with me was when I shyly painted my long, grown-out nails with a silver metallic nail polish during my sophomore year of high school. I’ve been experimenting with metallic surfaces within personal and narrative-based artworks works ever since.
What drew me towards gold tinsel is its seemingly dream-like quality. When applied to a three-dimensional surface, it creates an eye opening, surrealistic fantasy. I think about how viewers see tinsel and how to alter their perception of it. In this case, the tinsel, like women’s bodies, is an attraction. It is known that men perceive us as fascinating, shiny objects, not always respecting the intelligence and beauty within each and every one of us. The photographs, and the tinsel sculptures within, are a statement on the issue of objectification. Every day, women are exposed to a wide array of negative experiences by virtue of the male gaze, which makes us feel inhibited. The women in these sculptures are confined by the tinsel, which represents the effect of constant male attraction. While speaking to the inhibiting attention we receive and experience daily, this series additionally shines light on the true beauty and power of all women: and, oh, do we shine.
All photographs were shot on medium format 120mm color film.