18 April 2022

Motherhood and its Inevitable Separation

18 April 2022 - Written by PhMuseum

By pairing black and white photographs, Madeline Bishop depicts the development of the relationship with our mothers. Highlighting a process of detachment inherent in our cycle of becoming adults, her photographs question the nature of absence within the maternal domain.

We begin our lives looking for our mothers. Do we ever stop looking for them and do they ever stop looking for us? As we grow, we attempt to detach ourselves in order to become independent and live adult lives. What remnants of this relationship that defines our early lives remain in the distance of adulthood? Our memories morph, the details become duller and distorted over time and we’re left with a summarised version of what might have happened, similar to a photograph. Some edges will blur and some will sharpen until those are the only parts we can remember.

Words and Pictures by Madeline Bishop 


Madeline Bishop is a photography and video artist based in Melbourne, Australia. Bishop’s work is conceptually centered around relational dynamics. Exploiting the persistent tension between distance and closeness in photographs, Bishop’s work uses a performative and constructed approach to dissecting the relationship between photography and intimacy. Bishop is a Master of Fine Arts graduate with First Class Honours from the Victorian College of the Arts in Melbourne and has been a finalist in a number of prizes, most recently winning the 2020 IRIS Award. Follow her on Instagram and PhMuseum

This feature is part of Story of the Week, a selection of relevant projects from our community handpicked by the PhMuseum curators.

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