2021 Shortlisted

Rowena Meadows – Nobodys Child

By June 16, 2021 No Comments

Follow on Instagram @rowenameadowsphoto

While photographing ordinary scenes of family life over the past five years, I have found
myself drawn to depicting children and young people in anonymous ways.

This is a process, I suspect started out as a somewhat subconscious and nostalgic desire to
create images that allowed me to re-author some of my own childhood experiences. Over
time, this work has evolved into a broader acknowledgement of the profound unknowability
and mystery of a child’s private inner world.

I wanted to communicate the ways children are able to physically and emotionally fuse with
their environments in deeply immersive ways, allowing each image to become more
concerned with portraying a magical creature rather than documenting somebody’s child.

By removing the often, binary sentimentality of facial expressions indicating ‘happy’ or
‘sad’, the images rely more heavily on the use of space, gesture, tonality and mood in
communicating multiple potential strands of storytelling.

The faceless images are an invitation to the viewer to insert themselves into the frame of their
own real or imagined childhood. They are an opportunity to revisit the fleeting mystery and
ambiguity of youth, simultaneously, everybody’s and yet nobody’s child.

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