No Labels Series
The symbolic art portrayed in this series has only one subject. She graciously allowed me to photograph her in her natural element after a stint in rehab. The energy between us was one of spontaneity and creativity. While in this process, it got me thinking about the stigma attached to mental illness. And that is why I decided to call this series ‘No Labels’.
Salvador Dali, Paul Gaugin, Edvard Munch, Jackson Pollock, Michelangelo Buonarroti, and Sylvia Plath had something in common. They experienced life in duality. Traits such as being open to experience, exploratory risk-taking, and tolerance to ambiguity made them see and feel and understand more. But they also hurt more easily and so were more prone to experience suffering and dark moods.
Munch wrote in his diary: “My fear of life is necessary to me, as is my illness,” he once wrote. “Without anxiety and illness, I am a ship without a rudder…My sufferings are part of myself and my art.”
Van Gogh wrote in a letter to his brother: “I am unable to describe exactly what is the matter with me. Now and then there are feelings of emptiness and fatigue in the head… at times I have attacks of melancholy and atrocious remorse.”
When we encounter someone who is “different” we should strive not to label, but rather cultivate an understanding of the privilege to have met someone brave enough to face their demons and wrestle through the dark until the break of dawn.
The inception of this series commenced in April and continued through May 2017.