Archival pigment print 145 x 148.5 cm
Gallery MOMO, Johannesburg, RSA, 2011
Archival pigment print 153 x 145 cm
P o v e r t y P o r n o g r a p h y , 2 0 1 1 - 2 0 1 3
Inspired by Geoff Dyer’s publication, The Ongoing Moment, which discusses recurring themes found throughout the history of photography, Poverty Pornography interrogates the links between photographic representation of impoverished bodies in the global south and the racial stereotypes and cultural biases that persist today. I chose to re-present these images as nudes in order to mimic the emotional tension one feels when observing images that might fall into the “poverty pornography” category. One is simultaneously drawn to and repulsed by the image of suffering in a similar way that one is attracted to yet potentially shamed by the naked female form. Further, my decision to use my own body, rather than that of another woman stems from my belief that (as an artist) subjecting another woman’s body to this problematic form of representation would directly contradict and therefore undermine the series’ intention.