Sarah was kind enough to provide Zouch with write-ups about her two fine art photography series:
Before I Put My Face On is my ongoing project exploring my feelings of grief, numbness, anger, alienation, isolation and fear. I am specifically relating to women who suffer from PTSD as a result of male on female violence. I’ve talked to several women who have had similar experiences as my own, and we found that we shared a habit of locking ourselves in the bathroom, turning on the shower, and sitting in the tub to sob. The shower blocks the sound of our cries, the water crashing on our heads soothes our convulsing bodies, and the drain carries our tears away. It is hidden grief, and it is a safe place. And then, we turn off the shower, dry off, put on our dresses, our faces, and our perfume to go out to work, or on a date. There is a face we show, and then there is the face of our pain that we hide.
Dreamscapes: Landscapes of the Imagination is a photographic essay about two landscapes that explore human intimacy with our environment. The University of Minnesota Arboretum has over a thousand acres of gardens and model landscapes. Just a half hour from the city, it is a site that artists visit for inspiration, and where they leave behind installations of their own, discovered by explorers going to hidden places. The Arboretum is a world that surrounds our senses, and merges with our imagination. Milwaukee Avenue (placed on the National Register of Historic Places) is the earliest ‘planned workers’ community in Minneapolis, consisting of two blocks of homes built in the 19th century for working class families. A few steps away from the busy city streets transport us to an intimate world of solace and magical landscape. My memories of the novel I read as a child, The Secret Garden by Francis Hodgson Burnett (as well as the 1949 film adaptation I watched) are associated with these places. Milwaukee Avenue and the University of Minnesota Arboretum are both standing metaphors about humans’ relationship with our environment. In The Secret Garden, little children tend to a garden (deserted and locked up by a grieving widower) reinvigorating the life of the garden, and ultimately their own physical health. Places like Milwaukee Avenue are a living representation of how humans tend to their own gardens – the ones outside of us, and the ones within us. If we peer long enough at places like these, they tell us something about ourselves, perhaps long ago locked away, lost in childhood.
See more of Sarah Knapp’s photography here.