This series alludes to religious iconography and makes direct reference to paintings by the Old Masters – Fuseli, Velazquez, Caravaggio, and Jacques-Louis David. Deconstructing and reconstructing the references and metaphors adding layers of meaning, guiding the spectator to a less ambiguous reading.
The collaboration of minds and the artistic talents of Gary Sheridan (Photographer) and Gemma Hadley (Model) tells the story of Gemma’s battle to overcome her eating disorder, aestheticizing her intense emotional responses/ the intensity of her feelings), the side-effects and scars. In a perfectionistic society which glorifies a form-over-function vision of the female body, this further oxygenates/fuels the burning flame. Gemma’s words below encompass her strength to overcome.
‘I am my own icon. I challenge the beliefs and ideals that have haunted my mind and driven my body to destruction.’
When observed, beauty is pleasure. Beauty is perfection. It’s a visual symphony, effortless and entrancing. It’s addictive and we either want it, or we want to be it. The perfect body. A beautiful face. Society tells us that this is what we desire, the key to contentment. But what really lies behind all of this? Unlock the front door of social media, models, and normalised objectification, and behind it you will find corridors of conflict, cupboards of chaos and cellars of self-questioning.
Sinking in self-hatred, tormented by what we will never be and drowning in the sorrow of self-inflicted suffering. The mental and physical pain created by never-ending social feeds, quick-fixes and celebrity endorsements cannot be underestimated. As modern-day iconoclasts we must challenge this. Confront the succubus that haunts us, face the monkeys on our back and question what we see… “social media impersonates art and art is an illusion.”
About Gary Sheridan
Gary Sheridan has a 1st Class BA Hons Degree in Photography and has won a number of prestigious awards including an IPA Honorable Mention 2019, Finalist Worlds Top 10 Fashion Photographer 2018 (Oneeyeland) and a Gold Award London Photographic Award/Fashion. Gary has also been awarded the distinction of becoming an Associate of the Royal Photographic Society. The quality of his online portfolio, along with the prestigious awards, distinctions, and qualifications gives prospective customers confidence in Gary’s ability to deliver exceptional images.
Sheridan Photography based in the beautiful countryside of North Wales but offers his service internationally. Gary divides his professional practice between his Photo/Art and commercial assignments often finding a crossover between the both, on many occasions assigned as both Art Director and Photographer.
Gary has exhibited throughout the UK including solo exhibitions. It was whilst studying photography at the University of Wolverhampton in the UK that Gary found his passion for conceptual photography. His work draws on personal experience and his natural inquisitiveness in human behaviour. He constructs (often building sets in his studio) a series of work from a concept, such as in his recent work – Unwrapped, or he will see images in everyday life that speaks volumes to him, such as the piece Arbitrate. Whichever method of construction he uses, he intends the images to be multi-layered and engage the viewer thoughtfully, not just aesthetically. His work is vibrant, beautiful and seductive with a vein of humour that runs through its body, just as life should be, yet life is often not a bed of roses and Gary’s work often reveals… [Official Website]
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