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Sabrina Ovesen

Self Portraits


September 13 - October 20, 2001

This female body is a vast continent that contains a rich and vibrant story. If my body is an isolated landscape, I want it to be viewed as a dark territory.

This series of images are photographs of my naked body concentrating on form and posture. My face has been obscured by soft focus, or has been cropped out of the images forcing the viewer to focus upon the body. The emphasized skin surface displays scars, blemishes and wrinkles; this is not an innocent body without history, but a person who has experienced life. Portraits can be read as formal compositions, but, by creating images of an experienced body that is both beautiful and flawed, I hope to change this first, most accessible, reading. European culture has a history of desire and loathing for the female body. I want to subvert images of the female nude. The ageing, imperfect body can be associated with corruption, loss of sexuality and decay. Through this exhibition of photographic self-portraits I want to encourage pleasure in viewing a woman’s body that is not a limited icon of masculine heterosexual desire.