During my first semester in graduate school at Rochester Institute of Technology I created this body of work entitled Gravity.
During this series I was questioning the function of the modern portrait. The portrait has traditionally been one way to examine the “inner self.” With these images the subject puts on a performance by trying to look deceased. The extreme detail creates an illusion of plasticity making the portraits feel both real and not at the same time. Their youth creates a contradiction in the idea of performing death clearly pointing out that they are performing. This performance is what again relates to a questioning of the function of the modern portrait.
My subjects were photographed horizontally, which further helped erase their human qualities and take on aspects of a still life. By reorienting them vertically I am referencing the traditional portrait view. This reorientation expresses the gravity holding the subjects in place, creating a disorientation in how they are understood. Gravity is both the force holding them to this world and that which is giving the illusion of death.