The purpose of this piece is to begin from a position of a feminised notion of the gaze and test the extent to which it can be shifted towards a more masculinized perspective.
The two images I started with, for me, embody the passive perfection of the feminised gaze. However, possession of such idealisation is denied through the fracture of the images. Whilst they remain beautiful, they’re no longer intact and whole; they are perfect. The method of fracture – the way its nature changes across the picture surface – highlights its ability to shift the mood across the picture surface from areas of relative tranquillity to more frenetic activity.
The dominant scale of the resulting image, increased as it is from its original postcard size to 1.5 x 2.31 m, offers an assertive perspective. The eyes are positioned just above head height further emphasising this effect and maximising the tendency of the eyes to follow the viewer around the room. The result doesn’t offer an assured masculinised gaze – what would be the point – this merely replaces one stereotype with another? Rather, it results in something positioned in the ambiguous territory between feminised and masculinized; a slippery Other.
The installation method is seamless and invisible, hovering slightly insubstantially just proud of the gallery wall. Velcro has achieved this relatively well but I don’t like the slight ridge it creates at the bottom of the picture. Test an alternative construction method that replaces paper with the more durable canvas, then use two flat bars to tension fabric top and bottom just proud of the gallery walls.
After consideration, I didn’t install the text piece – it feels like it needs far more work.