Although I had already heard of Hannah Wilke as a sculptor, it wasn’t until I read an article in the British Journal of Photography that I discovered she also did photographic work as well. I was immediately drawn in by her SOS – Starification Object Series. Her way of going up against the way women were portrayed while being all out and in your face just got me. The simplicity of the images, and the use of black and white just told me that I had to do something like this.
But time went by and life got in the way and I wasn’t able to get around to it, until the January challenge in the Click Pro Elite group – Inspired By. It was perfect, and I set out to create a series of Hannha Wilke – inspired images.
It was no easy feat – she had done over 50 of them originally but I found it hard enough to do 10! It is difficult to pose yourself as another person, to try and emulate being that person – I guess this is something to think about, how we can try to be like someone else but never quite achieve it. But I did my best, and yes, I even “forgot” to shave my underarms in order to get a more authentic look! It wasn’t that hard seeing as I am naturally lazy! I also wasn’t quite brave enough to go for the full topless, but am pleased with what I did achieve.
It has been a journey of discovery, of trial and error and of appreciation for this woman who has so shaped me, even though she is no longer around to see that. Proof that our art can keep affecting others even after we are gone.