Rewiring our Beauty Ideology

April 14, 2014  •  Leave a Comment

On Monday I had the opportunity to speak about my work at Fashion Filter: Perspectives on Beauty in NYC.

This was the first time I've spoken publicly about this emerging body of work, and about my personal history where it informs the work.

In prepping my presentation I found myself considering my upbringing and how it shaped my ideas around femininity, objectivity and beauty.

The deeper I dug, the more I saw reflections of the restrictive ideology of my youth reflected in the culture around me.

There is still this pervasive theme of woman as object, passive and as valued only when beautiful.

I realized that there is a lot of reframing that needs to happen, both for me personally and for the world at large.

This is something that I hope to address in my work and to be able to empower everyone, no matter where they are on the gender spectrum, to claim their own power and ideas around beauty.

Therefore, the word "rewiring" is one that has become a constant these days in my personal lexicon. It feels so messy, so big, and also so imminently important:

"Rewiring" Fine Art Photography by Jen Kiaba. Click to purchase a Limited Edition Print."Rewiring" Fine Art Photography by Jen Kiaba.Click to purchase a Limited Edition Print.

When I think about it in the greater context, I realize that it's something that we all have to do.

We each have something we need to open our minds to in order to emerge into a newer and greater understanding of each other and our world.

So for me this piece emerged from this constant reminder that I want to reprogram my way of thinking.

I want to emerge into a fuller understanding of myself as a woman, as an artist, and a human being in general. I recognize faulty wiring from my religious background, as well as from the culture at large.

And sometimes I just wish I could open up my head and take care of some of that messy work!

If you'd like to watch my talk and learn a little bit more about my background, click on over here. My sister recorded my part in the panel discussion!

 


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