Sadness is Sexy - PhMuseum

Sadness is Sexy

Jessica Schwientek

2013 - Ongoing

Sadness is Sexy is an ongoing self study of intimate self portrait photographs. The collection was never a planned series but was collated over time trough a compulsion to photograph myself in the mirror on particularly hard days.

The photographs are silver gelatine prints from 35mm film and printed in various sizes and paper stocks over the years. Some images are ripped, dirty and scratched but the imperfections of the media reflect the emotional resonance of the images as well as the passing of time.

Some of these photographs depict personal devastating moments, hardships and the everyday. I am exhausted, heartbroken and empty. Some of these images are taken directly before or after saying goodbye to loved ones for the last time and in others I have completely given up hope for something better. As an artist driven by stillness I do not photograph with my eye, I photograph with my heart. Every time I press the shutter I capture all of the things I feel within that moment.

When I am alone with a mirror I am only with myself and all of the things I perceive myself to be. My persona slips away and I see a moment of truth. I am not comfortable with my nakedness and showing these vulnerable moments are beyond hard but important for me to find a sense of security in my own skin.

Sharing these images with others was never my intention at the time of capture, more a personal archive, but they have become a crucial asset to my practice and artistic identity.

I do not believe in truth in photography, everything is curated and subject to endless interpretations but these are of the most honest images in my vast collection of moments. Nothing is real.

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  • Untitled Mirror, 2015

  • Untitled Mirror, 2017

  • Untitled Mirror, 2016

  • Untitled Mirror, 2017

  • Untitled Mirror, 2016

  • Untitled Mirror, 2019

  • Untitled Mirror, 2018

  • Untitled Mirror, 2013

  • Untitled Mirror, 2015

  • Untitled Mirror, 2014

  • Untitled Mirror, 2013

  • Untitled Mirror, 2018

  • Untitled Mirror, 2015


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