I'm a visual artist whose interest lies in stories that are locked away and in those which are shamed into hiding. There is a nuanced activistic approach in my work, where showing the unseen or hidden from society becomes a political statement. Through my work, I aim to actively challenge traditional gender norms through hair and body hair and investigate human's relationship with nature. My work consists of photography which is often combined with other mediums such as video, writing, installation, and handicraft.
As spring came, everything changed. There was courage in our chests and butterflies in our stomachs. Which drove us to hatch from our shells, grow tall by the support of our roots and feel the soft flush of spring on our heads for the first time in years — as we shed the protection of wigs and scarves from our heads and ventured out to nature hand in hand.
This is a story of solidarity and understanding, tied together with the experience of hair loss and alopecia. In the public, we often conceal ourselves. Some of us are bald, some of us have bald spots, some have hair growth, some have half of their hair. I invited women with hair loss to be vulnerable in front of my camera, and together we created a safe space, where our baldness and hair loss isn’t a burden but just the way we are.
In here, surrounded by nature, we will not notice the lingering looks of passerby’s nor hear the whispers that would usually drift into our ears. In here, we bask in the support of one another as who we are.
This is our haven, our place of safety.
When my hair started falling out, my mother told me: I would give you my hair if I could. It was a sentiment that has stayed with me ever since, just like my mother stayed by my side when all of my hair was gone. She kept her promise and gifted me with a lock of her hair, which I crafted into an earring — to spiral on my shoulders where my own hair used to fall. Her intimate act, ignited in me an idea that perhaps, my femininity was not tied to my hair but my relationships with women around me were. My thesis explores women’s hair and hairlessness as storytellers of women’s lives, portraying the complex and diverse relationships that women have with their hair, and through it, with each other and the surrounding world.